The Google Play Store and the Google Android Market have been very handy to Android phone users who want to maximize the use of their smartphones or tablets through various games and apps. These online application stores give users access to almost any kind of app, be it for health, work or play as the main sources to purchase, download and install Android apps from.
But there are some things they just couldn’t offer like, for example, integration with social media and management of apps and updates. There are also some apps that seem to be unavailable in these two online marketplaces. For these kinds of situations, there are other alternative app sources out there that can provide you with what’s “missing”.
If there was only one piece of advice I could give someone diving head first into free Android apps it would be: do not disregard alternative markets. Below are top five best alternative to Google Play store and these sources can serve as supplements or alternatives to the Android Market and Google Play Store. They are not in any way meant to replace the two; they are instead used to either enhance user experience or provide what the two main app markets couldn’t.
Perhaps one of the best alternate apps for the Android Market, Appbrain serves as an enhancement software that lets you manage your apps – everything you purchased, downloaded, and even the updates available or already present in your Android smart phone. It even has a section where you can see the apps and updates recommended for you.
Appbrain has already upgraded to implement social media capabilities. You can see what your friends have downloaded and installed on their phones, and even share the apps you have with them (provided that they are also using Appbrain). It is also possible for you to sync your phone with your computer so you’d have the option to download apps from the computer and have it automatically installed into your phone.
F-Droid is one of the leading free and open source software provider for a wide range of Android users. Its features include a repository where all available apps and updates are listed. It automatically detects apps that are already on your phone, and you have the option to set it so that it automatically scans and updates the repository for new software (on fixed intervals, depending on the settings). It also provides multiple versions of any app, if there are any.
Known as one of the best alternative Android app markets when it comes to global reach, you can say that SlideMe provides everything it can everywhere. Second only to the Android Market, it provides developers the opportunity to deliver their programs on a world-wide scale. It even has a “Hire this Developer” button that can be used to commission capable programmers for making specific software. While most of the apps here are for free, there is an option to provide donations for the developers.
What makes Amazon Appstore a great alternate app for the Google Play Store? First off, as its name suggests, it is owned and run by Amazon – the largest online retailer in the world. They have the necessary resources, experience and authority to market their apps.
There is also an app review process that can guarantee quality content for every consumer. Add a very supportive developer support which provides prompt responses to issues and inquiries, Amazon Appstore works best for both the buyer and the maker of Android apps.
There are some apps available in the Android Market that fall under the “Gold” category, meaning these are like top-of-the-list apps that can be acquired for a price. This is what makes GetJar different among the rest – some of these Gold items can be obtained from GetJar free of charge. And they provide it in a legal way so there won’t be worries about piracy going on around it.
Android, unlike other smartphone/tablet operating systems, has a great feature wherein you can avail of apps from other markets aside from those of Google’s. Because of that, more and more people are going for Android for their smartphones and tablets to take advantage of this myriad of choices.
Whether you go for the alternatives or for the main app markets, what’s important is that you get apps that are safe for your gadget and useful for your needs. Happy downloading!
Author’s Bio: Jay Manangan is an online marketing strategist for Repair Labs, An industry-recognized specialist in computer and gadget repair. He spends most of his time on the internet, reading technology and computer blogs. He’s the axeman of a band called “ManMinusMachine”.