Thursday, August 26, 2010

AppBrain goes global

AppBrain is trying to make it as easy as possible for you to find the best apps for your Android phone.
Some apps like Google Maps are popular all over the world, but there are also many great apps which are appealing for users in a specific country, or speaking a certain language.

For example the London Tube Status app is very popular in the UK, and not so much in other countries.
To discover these apps we recently launched the app popularity ranking per country.

Today we are excited to announce that we will also make the AppBrain website and app available in a number of different languages, which makes AppBrain even better to browse for local apps.

We started with releasing the German and Dutch site: AppBrain auf Deutsch, AppBrain in Nederlands.

We will release more languages in the near future. Please contact us if you would like to volunteer to translate AppBrain and bring it to your country! (contact@appbrain.c[email protected])

Update: We just added the French version: AppBrain en Français

Uwe for the AppBrain team.


Friday, August 20, 2010

New ways to find the Android apps you like!


As the Android market now has well over 70,000 apps, finding the apps you want can be hard. Sometimes you know exactly what you want, and then searching is a great way to get your app. But often, you don’t know the exact  name of an app you might like, and then it’s more useful to browse around and see what other people like. The Google Android market doesn't allow easy discovery of interesting new apps, because the all-time ranking of apps rarely changes the apps that are on top. The AppBrain hot apps list is a big step in the right direction, but we think browsing for apps could be even better.

Today we’re happy to launch a major upgrade to the AppBrain website, http://www.appbrain.com/. In addition to a cleaner user interface, it features much better ways in which you can browse for Android apps. By using anonymous aggregated user statistics, we are able to provide a number of interesting new ways to browse for apps.

For instance, you can now look for apps from the tools category that are popular among the youngest users of AppBrain, and find a Drivers Ed app. Or find out that there's three Hello Kitty themes in the top 10 popular themes among women.
We also made it much easier to find apps that are interesting to people from a specific country. I was happy to now easily find the “Albert Heijn” application from the list of apps most used in the Netherlands, where I’m from. The 15 countries we currently provide most-used lists for are the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Australia, the Netherlands, Italy, Denmark, Hong Kong, Brazil, France, Canada, Spain, and Portugal. Other countries unfortunately don’t have enough users on AppBrain to provide a ranking, but we will add more countries as soon as more people join!

In addition to the new lists, we also enhanced the ways you can filter the selection of apps down to what you want. For instance, the hot apps are now viewable by category, by clicking them on the left side of the screen. In addition to filtering by category, you can also add a filter to only get free, paid, new, updated, or price-reduced apps.

We hope you like the new look of the site and the new ways to browse the Android market!

Mathijs for the AppBrain team.

P.S. If you’re a developer of an Android app and are interested in more advanced stats about your app, check out the AppBrain developer dashboard.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Easier installing of apps for every website!

It's only a month ago we launched the "Fast Web Installer" feature for AppBrain, and we have seen tremendous uptake of it. Many users are enjoying the great experience it adds on top of the traditional AppBrain syncing mechanism. Even CNN quoted yesterday "Get your apps through AppBrain.com".

However, in our opinion apps can never be installed easy enough. I personally don't like how I often find myself discovering an app on a blog or developer's page, and then have to go to www.appbrain.com and find it again to install it with the fast web installer. It still is a much better experience than using a barcode scanner or typing the name of the app again on the phone, but it would still be nice if this can be more efficient.

Today we implemented an extension to the current AppBrain page that is a great alternative: the AppBrain install link.
Let's take the recently updated PayPal app as an example. The page about this app on AppBrain is http://www.appbrain.com/app/com.paypal.android.p2pmobile. This page gives the usual description, screenshots, related apps, user comments and changelog, and the important blue Install button for appbrain users. This page is great as a source of information about the app for a browsing user, but not so suitable as an install link.

For this purpose, we added the install URL which can be obtained by adding "?install" to the app page, so in this case that would be: http://www.appbrain.com/app/com.paypal.android.p2pmobile?install

If PayPal, or a review blog, would put this link on the page about this Android app, it makes available the AppBrain install experience with the best of two other options, the QR code (which is not useful when browsing from the phone), and the direct market link (which is not useful on the desktop):
- For desktop browsers, the traditional application page is shown, but with a large popup that explains how to install either via AppBrain or use a barcode scanner:

- For Android phones, the appbrain page is skipped altogether, and the market page is loaded directly, allowing for an easy install.

As an added benefit for developers, driving installs through this page increases the likelihood that an app will show up on our "Hot apps" list.

We hope many websites will start using this new type of link and make the web an even better place to discover and install Android apps!

Mathijs / AppBrain team.