Due to the nature of the Android Marketplace there’s all kinds of ways and means of searching for apps to install on your phone. I like to use a combination of AppBrain and the new web-based Android Marketplace which has been getting a lot of attention lately. Thanks to this blog I’m always on the search for new apps to review and seeing as Appsfire has pegged itself as ‘the best way to discover the greatest apps’ it seemed a good idea to give it a spin.
With it’s funky icon filled UI Appsfire truly is a unique way to search for new apps that may take your fancy. It’s certainly an acquired taste though, I personally like how it looks although some may find it cluttered and the lack of an ‘icons & text’ option can result in an amount of guesswork as to what apps you are looking at.
As well as the bog standard search window Appsfire comes with some great filter topics based on location, recent price drops, what’s hot right now or apps it thinks you may love. As well as the defaults topics there’s also a good selection of custom filters to choose from.
The UI scrolls quickly making browsing easy although when stationary I found it would annoyingly ‘jiggle’ from time to time with entire rows moving up and down.
There’s also a widget version so you can have a selection of available apps to peruse directly from your home screen. A word of warning, you might want to select the option ‘hide mature content’ otherwise you’ll have links for the likes of ‘Porno Tube’ viewable from your homescreen. Try explaining that one to your wife/children/boss/local vicar.
Away from the icon based UI, the menus and app info screens are pleasant on the eye with full info, ratings and even video previews when available. You can share app discoveries with friends as well as manage your current apps and whether they need updating or installing to your SD card.
Sadly issues can arise when you finally discover your app of choice, a number of apps I found in Appfire could not be located on the Marketplace at all.
Even after a week of installing Appfire, the offending apps were still listed despite not being available for download. This, for me, is quite a let down. I love how Appfire works but if it can’t deliver on the results it promises then the whole point of the app is lost somewhat.
Due to these mixed results Appfire may not be an all out replacement for the likes of AppBrain but it still serves as a viable alternative for finding apps that may have passed you by.