SlideME Android App Store
It has frustrated me no end that Optus has continually insisted to not permit the Android App Store to operate on Google Android handsets that have an Optus SIM inserted.
The fix is simple, turn off the phone, remove Optus SIM, insert Telstra SIM, turn on the phone, select and purchase software, turn off the phone, replace Optus SIM… but that gets tedious.
To that end the SlideME application store was a welcome alternative to Google’s Android Market. It’s not locked down to carrier, you can pay via credit card or pre-authorised Amazon payment, and it was simple and easy to use.
Until a week ago.
Since then the SlideME market has been offline. It’s just returning a blank page. There’s no mention of it on their site, explaining why they are offline, or when they expect to return. The only indicator that they even have an idea is their most recent twitter post…
@eggenstein yes we are aware of the search and apps view issue. Working on a new approach and fix.
That wording gives the impression that there is something seriously wrong with the store, given it needs a whole new “approach”…
I do hope to see the SlideME back up and delivering applications soon. I hope at least for the devlopers using their sevice that if they have decided to shut down, there is money available to pay the people who put the apps online…
Finally a new 3G version supporting Google’s Android OS is available.
With so many false starts with the Motorola Droid and the HTC Droid Eris being only CDMA (and thus useless here in Australia) I have been dying to get my hands on a newer piece of hardware.
It is a true quad band phone operating on 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz and supporting W-CDMA (UMTS).
Sadly the phone still appears to have the same 3MP camera as the ADP1, which would have been a welcome improvement had it been replaced.
Developer (ADPn) phones are only available to Android developers, more information is available here.
I recently discovered that it wasn’t all of Australia that is blocked from the Android Market. Of the major carriers it is just Optus. Sadly, that is who provides me with my SIM and occasionally network coverage.
I can only assume that it’s greed that has led Optus to prohibit the purchasing of App’s from the Market when users have an Optus SIM in their phone. There was a way around it using this app, which until recent versions of the Android OS worked just perfectly on rooted phones.
My solution at the moment is to swap SIM’s between my two phones (to a Telstra SIM) when I wish to purchase app’s, and then swap back. If you don’t have a Telstra SIM of your own, get a prepaid (it doesn’t need to have credit if you have a WiFi connection) or borrow a friends.
I have asked Google for comment on the issue with the Android Market and Optus, and will update the comments here when I get a response.
For those of you here in Australia that are disappointed about Kogan’s decision to “delay” the sale of their Agora Android Phones, there is still a 100% legitimate way to get your hands on a phone running Google Android.
To purchase a legally unlocked, fully working Android handset – you simply need to be a member (a publisher) of the Google Android Marketplace.
To sign up – just express your interest here. It costs $US25.
Once you have signed up, you will be able to log in to your market place account, and you will be permitted to purchase your very own “development only” handset.
It will cost you around $US399 all up to get the phone into your hands you won’t walk away with change from $US550.
Citing “potential future interoperability issues” Ruslan Kogan has this morning apologised to the many people that had pre-paid for their very own Kogan Agora Google phone.
Immediately after telling customers that the current version of the hardware has been completely scrapped over concerns that developers are writing software that already will not work on the device, Mr Kogan expresses remorse over the “delay” to the release of the Agora device.
Telling customers that forwarded money (in some cases as much as twelve weeks ago) “You will receive a full refund for your pre-order of the Kogan Agora. This will be processed within 7 days and automatically credited to your account.”
Conspiracy theorists amongst (see responses on CNet Article) us could be forgiven for thinking that this was all just a ploy to generate some capitol for Kogan.
I personally would love to see some independantly audited financial statements showing what happened with the money depostied in to Kogan bank accounts.
I would like the interest that is surely generated credited back to my account in addition to the original investment made in a product that now appearently was not even in full production, yet was due for delivery in under 9 days.
To me, it seems that the product was not even a reality and citing ongoing compatability concerns is a pretty transparent attempt at keeping the geek masses happy.
I look forward to Kogan making a clear statement showing evidence of where all the prepayment money was stored, and what the interest that money generated was used for.
I think if Kogan is unable to prove that they actually had a device under development and ready to ship to Australia, then they should at the very least have to refund the initial payment – please reasonable bank interest.