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Topic # 59226 30-Mar-2010 14:24
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I've been looking at a couple of different paid app's from the Android Market & elsewhere... what I am hesitant about is upgrades and crap software...

- Upgrades - are these provided for free after purchasing?  Or do you need to pay for upgrades?  Does this differ between the android market & other sources (other sources ebing developer site)?  For example I have installed PDAnet from the developer for a fee... but I won't see the update via the market since the app had to be installed on the laptop first. 

- App's that are crap/ buggy - how does one return/ get a refund for such app's?

I am thinking of getting CoPilot Live 8 - Australia & New Zealand and I see the version on the market is lower than that on offer from the developer.




Cheers, Stevo

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  Reply # 312846 30-Mar-2010 14:47
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And this is the biggest problem I see in a fragmented environment - Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian. How do you get the latest and greatest?

Sure some work is done. Symbian OS is easy to update since everything comes from Nokia. You still have to battle the telco customisation if you want a non-branded firmware.

But on Windows Mobile you don't get the OS updates unless manufacturers release that to you. Only now you have a (joke of a) mobile marketplace where you can centrally purchase and manage your applications.

What happens on Android? Go down the same path as Windows Mobile? That breaks the whole thing.





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  Reply # 312869 30-Mar-2010 15:55
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On the Android market you only pay for the app once.

After you have paid for it you should never see the price next to it again. It will say "Upgrade Available" (installed but you can get a newer version), "Purchased" (you've bought it, but it isn't currently installed - maybe you needed some space and uninstalled it ) or "Installed" (It's installed). 

A few devs have renamed their app ("i Music Tao" became "Neo Music Tao") and asked for money again...but you aren't compelled to pay it and the version you have installed already will keep working. 

The Android Market has a 24 hour no-questions-asked refund policy. If you install an app, you should see that for the next 24 hours in the Market, if you select it from the list, you will have two buttons: "Open" and "Refund & Uninstall". After the 24 hours has elapsed, this changes to just "Uninstall" and you can't get a refund. 

There are one or two devs who say "If it crashes on first install, uninstall it and re-install it". Note that if you do that, the second install does NOT get the 24 hour refund option. This is cheeky. So if it crashes first time, just ditch it...and consider making a complaint via "Report this app" if they have suggested you try twice. The Android Market is also community regulated. Apps are yanked off the Market if they get enough complaints.  

If you buy via another Market (like SlideMe.org) then that market will have its own rules and you'll have to read them to find out what are. If you buy direct from a developer, same applies. Pay attention.
 




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  Reply # 312870 30-Mar-2010 15:56
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freitasm: And this is the biggest problem I see in a fragmented environment - Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian. How do you get the latest and greatest?

Sure some work is done. Symbian OS is easy to update since everything comes from Nokia. You still have to battle the telco customisation if you want a non-branded firmware.

But on Windows Mobile you don't get the OS updates unless manufacturers release that to you. Only now you have a (joke of a) mobile marketplace where you can centrally purchase and manage your applications.

What happens on Android? Go down the same path as Windows Mobile? That breaks the whole thing.



Very timely:
Android Froyo to take a serious shot at stemming platform fragmentation

 

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  Reply # 312895 30-Mar-2010 16:42
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freitasm: And this is the biggest problem I see in a fragmented environment - Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian. How do you get the latest and greatest?


I'd say Android is approaching a plateau of maturity with v2.1 that should see everyone brought to the same level as much as their hardware will allow. No one today (other than the cheapo Chinese knock-off makers) is selling phones that can't run Android v2.1. They all have at least 500MHz processors and 256MB of RAM. only the G1 (Dream) and HTC Magic 32B (Dream's big brother) don't live up to this requirement....and even they can run trimmed down versions of Android v2.1 ported from more capable phones. I've run these myself. They are usable....but definitely not as good as having a fast phone with loads of RAM. 

By the end of the year Android will be essentially one OS version (2.x - whether 1 or 2)....and any new phones and most existing phones will be at that level. 

So one looking at buying an Android phone TODAY doesn't need to worry about this......just avoid those cheap Chinese knock-offs on TradeMe. They don't even do 3G...and have limited RAM (128MB) and slow processors (400MHz Samsung). That's the down side. The upside is they ARE Android phones and they only cost about $128. Cheap as chips. 







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  Reply # 312909 30-Mar-2010 17:06
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Thanks - great insights!




Cheers, Stevo



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  Reply # 312918 30-Mar-2010 17:19
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Installed paid app CoPilot Live 8 - Australia & New Zealand from the market for aorund $54 and then they wanted $53 more to install the maps - cheeky buggers. Whats the point of a geographically based app that you then have to pay AGAIN to use the maps??

Uninstalled & refunded...




Cheers, Stevo

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  Reply # 313094 30-Mar-2010 20:55
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That's a bit strange. I bought the software and ANZ maps for 33UKP which came to $74.65.

Not sure why they charged you twice. I see now the cost has gone up to 39UKP for some reason.




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  Reply # 313104 30-Mar-2010 21:03
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OT sorry, but do you find the Copilot maps to be good lchiu7? I've been tempted by either the Copilot or iGo maps once mine arrives but there aren't any reviews for our end of the world.

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  Reply # 313122 30-Mar-2010 21:19
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Linuxluver:
freitasm: And this is the biggest problem I see in a fragmented environment - Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian. How do you get the latest and greatest?


I'd say Android is approaching a plateau of maturity with v2.1 that should see everyone brought to the same level as much as their hardware will allow. No one today (other than the cheapo Chinese knock-off makers) is selling phones that can't run Android v2.1. They all have at least 500MHz processors and 256MB of RAM. only the G1 (Dream) and HTC Magic 32B (Dream's big brother) don't live up to this requirement....and even they can run trimmed down versions of Android v2.1 ported from more capable phones. I've run these myself. They are usable....but definitely not as good as having a fast phone with loads of RAM. 


And doing this you will be running a non-supported version of the OS for that specific hardware platform. It may be ok for the enthusiast, but not for mainstream users.

What you will see happening is what is Windows Mobile today: lots of different form factors (which Microsoft always said was an advantage) that in fact only confuse developers, don't provide effective upgradeability support, are quickly dismissed by manufacturers that go into "upgrade means money" mode - they launch many different models just to keep people upgrading, and make sure those old models don't run newer OS versions.

No, Android will suffer the lack of standards.







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Reply # 313194 30-Mar-2010 22:12
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lchiu7: That's a bit strange. I bought the software and ANZ maps for 33UKP which came to $74.65.

Not sure why they charged you twice. I see now the cost has gone up to 39UKP for some reason.


I know... tht's why I uninstalled.  I have sent the developer an email for clarification. Will post update.




Cheers, Stevo

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  Reply # 313238 30-Mar-2010 23:00
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freitasm:
 No, Android will suffer the lack of standards.


I have two android phones in front of me and i don't see this "lack of standards" you do.

One is Android v1.6 and the other is Android v2.1....and they both run all the same applications.

There are a handful of exceptions: Google Earth, Live Wallpapers and 3D Gallery.

But in terms of function there is no gap.  Both have maps, themes / eye candy and a photo and video gallery. 

Other than these three, both my phones have 115 apps in common and they all work just fine. 

This is why I read your words about "alck of standards" and "fragmentation" and simply can't accept them. 

As an Android user what you are describing does not match up with my daily experience of Android and it;s apps....and I have bought two copies of over 100 paid apps.......totally well over $500, so I have a lot of experience to base my view on.

As for "unsupported" ROMs....please make up your mind. On the one hand you paint a picture of phones with OSes orphaned by greedy vendors....then claim phone owners / users are "supported" by the same vendors?

Clearly not.

They will move to a new "unsupported" platform if they see benefit in doing so and are assured that there are dozens of software developers actively supporting and extended these - supposedly - unsupported phones.

Remember..... we have the source code. These phones ARE supported....even if the vendors aren't doing the supporting. Especially the mainstream phones.....like the G1, Magic/MT3G and the Nexus One. All of these have active, very competent people constantly updating and enhancing system for these phones and making active use of the source code provided by the phone makers as part of their GPL responsiblities. 

Android is different for this reason. You can't compare it to the closed WinMo platform.. Cyanogen Mod is as good (actually better - but for sake of argument - 'as good") as any vendor-provided Android system....and Steve Kondik and the developers working with him (there are many) provide more active, better support for the software than any telco...adding new functionfor those who want it more or less weekly.  

The "average user" may work that out....it isn't hard to find out. Certainly no secret. I;ve helped a few "average users" explore other options. 

Let's not forget the legions who jailbreak their "mainstream" iPhones in order to multi-task and access apps other than those approved by Apple. 

Is that fragmentation? :-)  








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  Reply # 313242 30-Mar-2010 23:09
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"The average user" may work that out? Those are the users who buy Symbian devices and don't know they can purchase new programs to run on their shiny new phones. Those are the users who buy Windows Mobile and don't know they can purchase new programs to run.

The Apple iPhone changed the game with their App Store - buy directly from the device. That's when "the average user" realised they could actually run applications on smartphones. Many people think Apple invented the smartphone. It could well be true, although we both know it's not.

So you expect "the average user" to at certain point wakeup and realise they can update OS, change configurations, etc? I think you will be asking too much for the current generation.

As for the "lack of standards" note I said "it will". Not now, but in the future I think fragmentation will happen. Not enough devices now to impact in the market yet.





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  Reply # 313377 31-Mar-2010 09:58
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Good to see that people still have passionate opinions about this. I've got some empathy for your views Mauricio but I have to say I've used a range of Android devices with a range of OS levels and the experience has been pretty damn consistent and basically all of the apps in common. Android appears to be growing through its fragmentation pains. There's issues there for sure but hopefully they knock them over as they arise.

Great to hear that the market worked just like it should Stevo. You bought an app, there was something about it you didn't like, you gave it back and got your money refunded. No issues just the way it should be.

At the top of the page you were worried about crap apps and upgrades - if you get your apps through the market then you'll get your upgrades through the market too. After buying and returning an app without a problem would you say your confidence levels re apps on Android have gone up?




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ald

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  Reply # 313389 31-Mar-2010 10:20
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I mentioned that Google was looking at ways of knocking over fragmentation as it arises.  Check out my post on Google's strategy for dealing with device vendor delays in releasing OS updates.




Best regards,
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www.simworks.com - New Zealands leading developer of mobile applications


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  Reply # 313436 31-Mar-2010 11:52
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ald: 

At the top of the page you were worried about crap apps and upgrades - if you get your apps through the market then you'll get your upgrades through the market too. After buying and returning an app without a problem would you say your confidence levels re apps on Android have gone up?


Yes definitley.  I have looked at a number of paid app's and this was was my first purchase.  I wanted the latest version which wasn't available in the market, but went the market route anyway, with the hope of receiving the upgrade in due course.

It was a bummer that they seemed to want me to pay for the app & then the maps... hopefully the developer will respond and positively (maybe it was an error?) and I've go back & purchase the app again.




Cheers, Stevo

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