Feb 24 AT 9:19 PM Sean Riley 36 Comments

Blapkmarket has left the building – Can we fix the problems it exposed?

Freeloaders and many non-U.S. Android users are pouring one out today for the loss of Blapkmarket, a site which offered up normally paid Android applications for free. The site owner, Jesusxxx, was notified by his host that he was being shut down so whether the site will be resurrected once he can find new hosting digs remains to be seen. I’m hoping that maybe rather than turning to piracy we can work to correct the perceived problems in the Market instead.

First, I’m sorry, but shenanigans to the notion that this is an appropriate response to the admittedly flawed 24 hour trial period on apps in the Market. Developers have to operate within the system that Google has created and it is the developers that you are hurting by downloading these apps for free. I don’t know Jesusxxx and he could be a great guy, but regardless of the intent this site was taking money out of the hands of people that dedicated days, weeks, or months to building their applications.

To the second category of users for the site, the foreign users that cannot access the Market, I understand your frustration but again the blame lies at Google’s feet and yet you are punishing the developers. I can’t believe that Google isn’t already working to rectify this issue, but as I fall out of the affected class I’ll let someone with standing in that area take up that cause.

To the people who are just being cheap and not paying developers for their work, PAY UP!

As to the 24 hour trial period being a real problem for people; I think we can and should do something to get Google’s attention on that issue. If they see enough interest in a change it might make them revisit this policy and to that end I just created a petition here asking that they give developers control over the trial period for their apps or failing that to uniformly increase the trial period from 24 to 72 hours.

I’m more than willing to tweak the petition if people have feedback so please check it out whether you agree with it or not and let me know what you think.

Source: AndroidGuys

Sean has been with Android and Me for over 4 years and covering mobile for the last 5. He occasionally muses about gadgets and tech outside of the Android universe at Techgasms.

    Most Tweeted This Week

  • http://Website Chris

    I thought this was the news section? Not the insanely biased section? I really enjoy androidandme.com but i’d like to read unbiased news. Report the news, let the readers make their own opinions.

    • http://yellowrex.com William Furr

      AndroidandMe is a blog. If you want news, you ought to visit a news site.

      • http://Website Chris

        Well thats odd, i believe this post is in the news section? Am i reading something wrong?

        • http://Website Bender

          since when is a news site not biased?

        • http://sweeterskins.net Lemon

          No, not reading something wrong, you’re just being a bit of a prick.

          • http://Website Chris

            I don’t mean to be a “prick,” just making sure the guy above knows what hes talking about.

            Regardless of any of this, piracy will continue no matter how much people love/hate it.

    • http://Website Riley

      He clearly acknowledges the opposing viewpoints and debunks them, and when he can’t (as is the case with people who don’t have access to paid apps) he doesn’t try to make an assertion.
      The point is, closing this site IS news because it means there is one less way that developers will lose out.

  • http://Website Pete S

    This is the *only* Android blog that I read that took the high road on this story. All the rest were painting this pirate as some kind of hero being oppressed by the man. It was disgusting.

    • http://Website mbrady

      Amen, and ditto. AndroidAndMe wins the day as far as I’m concerned.

    • http://Website commonsense247

      Yep… the entitlement mentality spreads across all aspects of life.

    • http://twitter.com/ohrock Roberto Serrano

      +1

      I must say that as a developer I was offended but other articles and I like to see Taylor taking a stand in our favor.

  • http://Website adam schlaegel

    I think so trial period should be required at least for a short period. No preview is availible with the iphone apps it gives screen shots of the app in use I think if google can provide screen shot view of apps in use b4 purchase of the apps then they could remove trial periods.

    • http://Website Patrick O’Leary

      Screenshots are present in Market on Android 1.6+.

      To the topic at hand–many game developers would rather have a much *shorter* trial period, as many people will play the game and return it in less than 24 hours. Going to 72 hours isn’t going to make them very happy.

      • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

        I agree that there are categories, such as games, that don’t pan out so well for a 72 hour trial, much as other categories don’t really play well with the current 24 hour trial. That is why I was suggesting that developers should be able to control it themselves, a one-size-fits-all policy is simply impractical.

      • http://sweeterskins.net Lemon

        Letting the dev decide is a good idea.

        2hrs
        12hrs
        24hrs
        72hrs

        Seems like a good idea.

  • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

    I think there are some more important changes they could make (like coupon codes), but making the trial period longer should result in more sales.

    It’s kind of like when Blockbuster made their rental periods longer so you would forget to return your movies and then get hit with late fees. Then Blockbuster did away with late fees and tried to sell you the movies. Then they started going out of business and closing stores, so maybe this is a bad example.

    Anyways, I think some apps require a longer trial period than 24 hrs, but I’ve had zero issue with just paying for the full app. I’ve purchased a ton of paid apps and most are not even installed on my phone anymore. I don’t feel cheated because most were $1, but I can go back and get them for free anytime I wish.

  • http://Website c

    android market is not available in most countries,if google was gonna do something about we would have heard.they love bragging….as long as the market is not available in problay 90% of the countries in the world ,this will be a problem.

    Jesusxxx is not the first nor the last
    this is no different then mp3,dvd,blue ray,torrents and all that fun piracy stuff that you all know u have tried or used….

    the android market is horrible to preview apps,trail periods suck and limited market availability will make this a problem for a while till they address it……open source sure does not look like it…..

    the developers can also force google to deal with it cause it is google’s system that is flawed not theirs and it is costing the developers money.

    • http://sweeterskins.net Lemon

      I agree with you that people not being able to purchase paid apps in a lot of countries is a HUGE pain in the ass. Just huge.

      I DON’T agree that the market is “horrible” to preview apps. 24 hours, in general, is a fucking age to decide if an app is worth your $2. For god’s sake. What else do you want? ALL apps to be free? Games to have a 7 day trial period? Get real.

  • http://Website Inquisitor

    To be honest, if anything this post is doing a lot more harm than good, as people who never heard of this site (like me) are now interested and willing to check it out once it goes back online, as it probably will do. Not saying I’ll check it out, just saying I never heard of it, though I have heard of pirating in general. I feel that the problem of pirating on Android is a lot less then others because mostly devs are awesome about giving good lite versions for the people who don’t like to pay for a lot of apps, like myself. I’d never pirate an app, the only non-market apps i installed are those that are betas or beta-ish (like Gowalla or Swype, or the 2.1 Gallery and Music player).

  • http://www.androidguys.com c0z

    There will need to be time intervals, not just 72 hours. Games can be played/beat in 72hrs easier than 24, and there would be less motivation for people to make them, in my opinion.

    Furthermore, I hope everyone realizes that the article I posted on AndroidGuys is not like the Book of Coz on whether or not piracy is right. I presented the REASONS people have been pirating and commented on them. If you think I’m pro-piracy, you’re gravely mistaken. The first thing I said to Jesusxxx was that I don’t agree with what he does, but I wanted to get some information for my article about WHY he does it.

    Thank you.

  • http://Website charrion

    Speaking as one of those people in a country that does not have access to paid apps (Canada) I can honestly say that is my biggest bone of contention.

    One of the first apps I installed on my HTC Dream once I rooted it was Market Enable so that I could purchase apps and I bought a few. And the only ones I ever requested a refund for were apps that outright did not run or ran very poorly on my phone, I only needed a couple of minutes to make those decisions.

    However, now that I’ve purchased a Milestone I’m at an impasse once again. There is currently no way to root the Telus Milestone and so once again I’m left with no way to purchase the apps I would like to purchase. Not only that, it’s very difficult to get the apps I have already purchased onto my new phone. I have to fire up my old Dream, download the apps, pull the apks off the Dream and then copy them over to the Milestone.

    Just so that I can continue to be honest.

    It’s bad enough not having the access, but Google has said absolutely nothing about why and how long we can expect to wait. They’re not even trying to divert blame by foisting it on those countries’ governments or other bodies. It give the impression that Google just doesn’t give a damn, They’re getting money from someone, who cares about the rest?

    I’m not saying this to advocate piracy, mind you. Where possible I will use slideme.org’s Mobentoo app or purchase direct from the publisher via their website. But sometimes those options aren’t even available and in those cases, yes I consider less honest means.

  • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

    Clearly the 72 hour fallback position is not workable, I’ve amended the petition to expressly ask that developers be given control of the trial period.

    It was the rationalizing you described by the former users of the site that I was responding to in my post; I wasn’t trying to suggest that it was your position which I thought you made clear early on when you said “For starters, let’s be really clear on one thing: stealing apps is bad, mmkay?”

    • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

      Oops, that was meant to be in reply to c0z.

  • http://Website gad

    Why is Google finding it hard to make the market available in most countries,its not rocket science is it?
    It will kill the market,kill developers, and kill Android ultimately.
    When more countries have access to the market,less people will go the piracy route, its that simple. Of course you can’t completely stop all together but it can be reduced considerably.

    In my opinion i think 24hrs is good enough,its enough time to decide if an app is worth buying or not.

    Pls Sean, Taylor, and all you guys in the know, whenever you have the opportunity, ask Google what is holding them back from making the market more accessible in most countries,its not that difficult is it?

    • http://Website Cintra

      Right on..
      The pressure needs to be on Google to open the Market up!
      What is this a ‘Market beta’ for Gods sake? I bought my Magic in Norway for around $600 almost a year ago, and still have no access to paid apps…

      Get real Google, you are losing our trust

      • http://Website phuzzykiller

        I couldn’t agree more. Since I live in Canada, it almost seems pointless to buy android when there’s no access to paid apps. It’s no wonder that guys like jesusxxx are around.
        As to laying the blame at google’s feet, this problem’s been complained about for a long time now. If google’s not paying attention to the consumer, the dev’s need to really start putting pressure on google.

  • http://Website Richy

    I can’t get over how cheap people are. Someone holding a €300+ smartphone and wants trial periods, and refunds etc for a €2 or €3 app!? How cheap are you!?

    I can guarantee most of you would no sooner spend €3 on a can of coke + crisps without a second thought.

    Refunds should be limited to when an app doesn’t run on your phone. And then ONLY. and if you think otherwise, well then you’re just a scabby pr1.ck!

  • http://TheproblemwiththeMarketnothavingpaidApps Roberto Serrano

    Just want to point out that this is a problem of the individual carriers. Since the Market revenue sharing model requires carriers to sign an agreement with Google to split the money with developers, and determine paying methods, etc. As a result, the carriers that have no agreement have no paid apps.

    Sorry, but you should call your carrier and tell them to work an agreement with Google.

    Also, Google has said multiple times that they are working hard on this one,

    Roberto

    • http://Website charrion

      I don’t think it’s so cut and dried as that Roberto. In Canada we have two different carriers selling Android phones; neither of them have access to paid apps. I have a hard time believing that both of them are dragging their heels on an agreement that would ultimately bring them more revenue.

      There are likely other factors involved. The truly annoying thing is how closed-mouthed Google is about these factors. You’d think if they weren’t at fault they would shout it to all who would listen that it’s such-and-such carrier or some country’s government holding things up but they remain tight-lipped suggesting that they are culpable.

  • http://www.androidui.net ExtremeT

    I’m glad the petition was amended. A selection of trial times/refund available times is the best course of action since some apps wouldn’t need 72 hours or even 24 hours for the user to know they want a refund. If anything it should be shorter.

    I’m glad the site got shut down but at the same time, there always has been and always will be some form of piracy on the internet, the Android market is no different.

  • http://androidpt.com Luis Sismeiro

    Hi,

    I am an Android user from Portugal and here we don’t have access to the paid Market. I don’t like to use applications that I am not entitled to use so I prefer not to install paid applications that we can get from the Internet like many people do.

    I could root my phone and use the Market Enabler application but I don’t want to root my phone so I only have one paid application that is Documents To Go that I bought from the DataViz site directly.

    I urge Google to solve this problem and open the paid Market on every country that at least has Android phones on sale. Developers are losing many because of this.

    Regards,
    Luis Sismeiro

  • http://Website Darshan

    I didn’t know about this site, but I do know about androidplayground.net, a site that really upsets me — both on principle and because they are essentially stealing from me personally, making money on my application without my permission and without me seeing a penny of it.

    Do you happen to know anything about it? I don’t understand why Google hasn’t stopped them or why their ISP lets them blatantly pirate software.

  • krazytrixxxsta

    there still other sites where i can get paid app for free, so im all good

  • http://Website Mr.G1

    :) I get any app I want :) Thanks Android!!!

  • http://www.kacaudah.com Abdul Fullerton

    Hi! I’ve been following your web site for a long time now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Porter Tx! Just wanted to mention keep up the fantastic work!

  • http://www.kacaudah.com Elroy Ceretti

    I can see you occur to be an expert at your field! I’m launching a internet internet site soon, and your details are going to be seriously exciting for me.. Thanks for all your assist and wishing you all the success.

  1. ChrisGuest 5 years ago

    I thought this was the news section? Not the insanely biased section? I really enjoy androidandme.com but i’d like to read unbiased news. Report the news, let the readers make their own opinions.

    • William FurrGuest 5 years ago

      AndroidandMe is a blog. If you want news, you ought to visit a news site.

    • RileyGuest 5 years ago

      He clearly acknowledges the opposing viewpoints and debunks them, and when he can’t (as is the case with people who don’t have access to paid apps) he doesn’t try to make an assertion.
      The point is, closing this site IS news because it means there is one less way that developers will lose out.

  2. Pete SGuest 5 years ago

    This is the *only* Android blog that I read that took the high road on this story. All the rest were painting this pirate as some kind of hero being oppressed by the man. It was disgusting.

  3. adam schlaegelGuest 5 years ago

    I think so trial period should be required at least for a short period. No preview is availible with the iphone apps it gives screen shots of the app in use I think if google can provide screen shot view of apps in use b4 purchase of the apps then they could remove trial periods.

    • Patrick O'LearyGuest 5 years ago

      Screenshots are present in Market on Android 1.6+.

      To the topic at hand–many game developers would rather have a much *shorter* trial period, as many people will play the game and return it in less than 24 hours. Going to 72 hours isn’t going to make them very happy.

      • I agree that there are categories, such as games, that don’t pan out so well for a 72 hour trial, much as other categories don’t really play well with the current 24 hour trial. That is why I was suggesting that developers should be able to control it themselves, a one-size-fits-all policy is simply impractical.

      • Letting the dev decide is a good idea.

        2hrs
        12hrs
        24hrs
        72hrs

        Seems like a good idea.

  4. I think there are some more important changes they could make (like coupon codes), but making the trial period longer should result in more sales.

    It’s kind of like when Blockbuster made their rental periods longer so you would forget to return your movies and then get hit with late fees. Then Blockbuster did away with late fees and tried to sell you the movies. Then they started going out of business and closing stores, so maybe this is a bad example.

    Anyways, I think some apps require a longer trial period than 24 hrs, but I’ve had zero issue with just paying for the full app. I’ve purchased a ton of paid apps and most are not even installed on my phone anymore. I don’t feel cheated because most were $1, but I can go back and get them for free anytime I wish.

  5. cGuest 5 years ago

    android market is not available in most countries,if google was gonna do something about we would have heard.they love bragging….as long as the market is not available in problay 90% of the countries in the world ,this will be a problem.

    Jesusxxx is not the first nor the last
    this is no different then mp3,dvd,blue ray,torrents and all that fun piracy stuff that you all know u have tried or used….

    the android market is horrible to preview apps,trail periods suck and limited market availability will make this a problem for a while till they address it……open source sure does not look like it…..

    the developers can also force google to deal with it cause it is google’s system that is flawed not theirs and it is costing the developers money.

    • I agree with you that people not being able to purchase paid apps in a lot of countries is a HUGE pain in the ass. Just huge.

      I DON’T agree that the market is “horrible” to preview apps. 24 hours, in general, is a fucking age to decide if an app is worth your $2. For god’s sake. What else do you want? ALL apps to be free? Games to have a 7 day trial period? Get real.

  6. InquisitorGuest 5 years ago

    To be honest, if anything this post is doing a lot more harm than good, as people who never heard of this site (like me) are now interested and willing to check it out once it goes back online, as it probably will do. Not saying I’ll check it out, just saying I never heard of it, though I have heard of pirating in general. I feel that the problem of pirating on Android is a lot less then others because mostly devs are awesome about giving good lite versions for the people who don’t like to pay for a lot of apps, like myself. I’d never pirate an app, the only non-market apps i installed are those that are betas or beta-ish (like Gowalla or Swype, or the 2.1 Gallery and Music player).

  7. c0zGuest 5 years ago

    There will need to be time intervals, not just 72 hours. Games can be played/beat in 72hrs easier than 24, and there would be less motivation for people to make them, in my opinion.

    Furthermore, I hope everyone realizes that the article I posted on AndroidGuys is not like the Book of Coz on whether or not piracy is right. I presented the REASONS people have been pirating and commented on them. If you think I’m pro-piracy, you’re gravely mistaken. The first thing I said to Jesusxxx was that I don’t agree with what he does, but I wanted to get some information for my article about WHY he does it.

    Thank you.

  8. charrionGuest 5 years ago

    Speaking as one of those people in a country that does not have access to paid apps (Canada) I can honestly say that is my biggest bone of contention.

    One of the first apps I installed on my HTC Dream once I rooted it was Market Enable so that I could purchase apps and I bought a few. And the only ones I ever requested a refund for were apps that outright did not run or ran very poorly on my phone, I only needed a couple of minutes to make those decisions.

    However, now that I’ve purchased a Milestone I’m at an impasse once again. There is currently no way to root the Telus Milestone and so once again I’m left with no way to purchase the apps I would like to purchase. Not only that, it’s very difficult to get the apps I have already purchased onto my new phone. I have to fire up my old Dream, download the apps, pull the apks off the Dream and then copy them over to the Milestone.

    Just so that I can continue to be honest.

    It’s bad enough not having the access, but Google has said absolutely nothing about why and how long we can expect to wait. They’re not even trying to divert blame by foisting it on those countries’ governments or other bodies. It give the impression that Google just doesn’t give a damn, They’re getting money from someone, who cares about the rest?

    I’m not saying this to advocate piracy, mind you. Where possible I will use slideme.org’s Mobentoo app or purchase direct from the publisher via their website. But sometimes those options aren’t even available and in those cases, yes I consider less honest means.

  9. Clearly the 72 hour fallback position is not workable, I’ve amended the petition to expressly ask that developers be given control of the trial period.

    It was the rationalizing you described by the former users of the site that I was responding to in my post; I wasn’t trying to suggest that it was your position which I thought you made clear early on when you said “For starters, let’s be really clear on one thing: stealing apps is bad, mmkay?”

  10. gadGuest 5 years ago

    Why is Google finding it hard to make the market available in most countries,its not rocket science is it?
    It will kill the market,kill developers, and kill Android ultimately.
    When more countries have access to the market,less people will go the piracy route, its that simple. Of course you can’t completely stop all together but it can be reduced considerably.

    In my opinion i think 24hrs is good enough,its enough time to decide if an app is worth buying or not.

    Pls Sean, Taylor, and all you guys in the know, whenever you have the opportunity, ask Google what is holding them back from making the market more accessible in most countries,its not that difficult is it?

    • CintraGuest 5 years ago

      Right on..
      The pressure needs to be on Google to open the Market up!
      What is this a ‘Market beta’ for Gods sake? I bought my Magic in Norway for around $600 almost a year ago, and still have no access to paid apps…

      Get real Google, you are losing our trust

      • phuzzykillerGuest 5 years ago

        I couldn’t agree more. Since I live in Canada, it almost seems pointless to buy android when there’s no access to paid apps. It’s no wonder that guys like jesusxxx are around.
        As to laying the blame at google’s feet, this problem’s been complained about for a long time now. If google’s not paying attention to the consumer, the dev’s need to really start putting pressure on google.

  11. RichyGuest 5 years ago

    I can’t get over how cheap people are. Someone holding a €300+ smartphone and wants trial periods, and refunds etc for a €2 or €3 app!? How cheap are you!?

    I can guarantee most of you would no sooner spend €3 on a can of coke + crisps without a second thought.

    Refunds should be limited to when an app doesn’t run on your phone. And then ONLY. and if you think otherwise, well then you’re just a scabby pr1.ck!

  12. Roberto SerranoGuest 5 years ago

    Just want to point out that this is a problem of the individual carriers. Since the Market revenue sharing model requires carriers to sign an agreement with Google to split the money with developers, and determine paying methods, etc. As a result, the carriers that have no agreement have no paid apps.

    Sorry, but you should call your carrier and tell them to work an agreement with Google.

    Also, Google has said multiple times that they are working hard on this one,

    Roberto

    • charrionGuest 5 years ago

      I don’t think it’s so cut and dried as that Roberto. In Canada we have two different carriers selling Android phones; neither of them have access to paid apps. I have a hard time believing that both of them are dragging their heels on an agreement that would ultimately bring them more revenue.

      There are likely other factors involved. The truly annoying thing is how closed-mouthed Google is about these factors. You’d think if they weren’t at fault they would shout it to all who would listen that it’s such-and-such carrier or some country’s government holding things up but they remain tight-lipped suggesting that they are culpable.

  13. ExtremeTGuest 5 years ago

    I’m glad the petition was amended. A selection of trial times/refund available times is the best course of action since some apps wouldn’t need 72 hours or even 24 hours for the user to know they want a refund. If anything it should be shorter.

    I’m glad the site got shut down but at the same time, there always has been and always will be some form of piracy on the internet, the Android market is no different.

  14. Luis SismeiroGuest 5 years ago

    Hi,

    I am an Android user from Portugal and here we don’t have access to the paid Market. I don’t like to use applications that I am not entitled to use so I prefer not to install paid applications that we can get from the Internet like many people do.

    I could root my phone and use the Market Enabler application but I don’t want to root my phone so I only have one paid application that is Documents To Go that I bought from the DataViz site directly.

    I urge Google to solve this problem and open the paid Market on every country that at least has Android phones on sale. Developers are losing many because of this.

    Regards,
    Luis Sismeiro

  15. DarshanGuest 5 years ago

    I didn’t know about this site, but I do know about androidplayground.net, a site that really upsets me — both on principle and because they are essentially stealing from me personally, making money on my application without my permission and without me seeing a penny of it.

    Do you happen to know anything about it? I don’t understand why Google hasn’t stopped them or why their ISP lets them blatantly pirate software.

  16. there still other sites where i can get paid app for free, so im all good

  17. Mr.G1Guest 5 years ago

    :) I get any app I want :) Thanks Android!!!

  18. Abdul FullertonGuest 4 years ago

    Hi! I’ve been following your web site for a long time now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Porter Tx! Just wanted to mention keep up the fantastic work!

  19. Elroy CerettiGuest 4 years ago

    I can see you occur to be an expert at your field! I’m launching a internet internet site soon, and your details are going to be seriously exciting for me.. Thanks for all your assist and wishing you all the success.