Now the hypes gone. Should you use the Amazon appstore?
There has been so much hype surrounding the Amazon Android appstore launch that I expected some amazing alternative to the Android marketplace that will blow it out of the water so when I first visited the Amazon App store I was a little disappointed. However, it doesn’t mean that the Amazon app store doesn’t have its advantages.
In this article I will go through every pro and con I and others in the Android community can think of. This should help you decide if you should use the Amazon app store or not.
1. Deals – The Amazon app store is giving away a paid app for free every day. This means that you could potentially get some really good quality apps for free but it depends on what apps are on offer.
2. The ability to reply to comments – This may seem like a minor pro but I have seen many comments on the Android Marketplace in the past that were false or misinformed. This could be a user not being able to setup an app and then writing a review that the app is terrible even though it was there fault. I would have loved to reply to those comments and now with the Amazon Appstore, I can.
3. Quality apps – The Amazon App store not only shares the same name as the Apple App store but also shares a similar application process. This means that only the best quality apps are accepted into the Amazon App Store so you wont find that you have to sift through hundreds of rubbish apps.
5. Safer – As the Amazon App Store has a strict application process it is far more unlikely that rogue apps will find themselves on the App Store.
6. Amazon giftcard – I have always thought that it would be nice to give someone the gift of Android apps. The Android Marketplace does not allow you to buy apps for someone else nor does it allow you to buy a gift card. As the App Store is from Amazon, you can buy an Amazon giftcard and use it to buy apps.
7. Competition – It is great that there is finally a viable competitor to the Android Marketplace. At the end of the day more competition means that the consumer will get a better deal. You never know, we may even get the amount of time we have to refund increased after it was decreased a couple of months ago.
8. Test drive – You can test drive applications that have the feature enabled. Test drive is an Android emulator that lets you test the app out right in your browser. A great feature that almost makes up for the lack of no refund policy.
1. Fragmentation – I agree with others that the Amazon app store could potentially benefit the Android community by bringing in competition and giving us more choice . However, if the Amazon App Store does become popular then we as customers will find that we have to search through two application stores to find the app we want. Especially if app developers follow the steps of Rovio (Angry Birds developer) and make their apps exclusive to a certain App Store.
2. More complicated installation – The Android Marketplace is more native than the Amazon App Store so the installation process of the Amazon App Store, the apps and the updates will be slightly more clumsier.
3. Small selection of apps – The Amazon App Store currently has a small selection of apps and it will be a long time until the Android Market has a competitive amount of apps, if it ever does.
4. No return policy – The Android Market gives you 15 minutes to refund a purchase while the Amazon App Store does not allow any refunds.
5. No in app purchasing – The Android Market will soon include in app purchases. This will mean that users will be able to buy addons for apps within the app. This may be used to enable extra features, buy a magazine etc. The Amazon App Store will never be able to support this.
6. DRM – Not all apps sold on the Amazon App Store have DRM as developers can choose if they want it or not. However, if they have chosen to include DRM then you will need to have the Amazon App Store installed on your mobile and be signed into your Amazon account.
7. Not available on AT&T or outside USA – If you live outside of the USA or use AT&T, then you won’t be able to access the Amazon App Store. For me, this is a deal breaker! I might be a little bias because I live in the UK and not the USA but this must leave out so many Android users.
The Amazon App Store does have its benefits such as the ability to reply to comments and the quality of apps. However, in my opinion the disadvantages equal or possibly outweigh the advantages to the Android App Store. Amazon have obviously realised this as they have a very good deal where you get a free paid app every day which bring lots of promotion from blogs and users.
Even though I will still use the Android Marketplace for the most part, I do think that the Amazon App Store is good for Android. I personally prefer a more open application store but I know there will be many Android users will benefit from a more closed but cleaner and safer experience. Also, we might find that we get better deals now there is competition.