One of the biggest problems with app stores is being able to find the app you want amongst the hundreds of thousands available. This poor experience hurts both consumers wanting to use great apps and developers wanting to make money from their hard work.
Just like Apple, Google also has this problem with the Android Market, and the company is always trying to improve the app finding experience. To this end, the search giant has announced five new features for its app store:
- New top app charts: top app charts are now more accurate and country-specific, so you get the most current, relevant results. The top new free, top new paid, and top grossing lists, have also been added to the Android Market home page.
- Editors' Choice: these are some of the very best apps available for Android, as chosen by the Android Market staff.
- Top Developers: Google is also recognizing developers creating the highest quality, most popular, and most notable Android apps. They'll get a special icon on the Android Market website, appearing wherever the developer name is shown, starting with an initial set of over 150 developers.
- Better related apps: on the left side of an app page, you'll now see two groups of related apps. The first is apps frequently browsed by people who viewed this app and the second is apps that people tend to install alongside this app. Related apps will also show once you decide to install an app.
- Trending apps: this new section on the Android Market homepage shows apps that are quickly growing in daily installs.
It took Google 20 months to reach 1 billion apps installed on the Android platform. Five months later, the company had hit the 2 billion apps installed milestone. Last month, the company was at 3 billion installed apps, and earlier this week, Google revealed that it had seen 4.5 billion apps installed from the Android Market.
Over the past two and a half years, the company has shipped eight releases of Android, and has seen 100 million activated Android devices so far. In fact, in August 2010, Google announced that Android activations passed the 200,000 per day mark. In December 2010 the number was at 300,000 Android phones daily, and earlier this week 400,000 new Android devices were being activated every day.
The only number that hasn't seen a bump recently is the that of free and paid applications available in the Android Market. Google crossed the 200,000 apps mark in December 2010 and hasn't updated that milestone since, but it shouldn't be long now.