Kobo Vox users have had their wish granted, with Kobo’s licensing of the Android Marketplace, now branded “Google Play”. This may be a case of be careful what you wish for, however.
Previously, GetJar was the app store on Vox. Although it wasn’t as slick as Google Play, there were some benefits to it. If you couldn’t find it easily on GetJar, you could always go to the web site for the app, and download it directly. No more. Now, if you don’t get it through Google, you don’t get it at all.
Yesterday I was trying to help a customer download the Dolphin HD browser onto his Vox, which I consider to be a superior browser to the one that comes pre-installed. I have done this for many a customer. I found about a million add-ons for Dolphin, but discovered that I can no longer download it, since the only version of Dolphin they had wasn’t compatible with the version of Android installed on the Vox. Okey dokey, go to Dolphin web site, download directly. Nope, because Google Play won’t let you download apps from anywhere but through them. Arg! I ended up installing Opera, since it is still better than the original browser. All I wanted was a browser home page button, guys. Tabbed browsing. Is that so much to ask?
I’m sure there’s a way around this, but is there a way around it that won’t void your warranty? Stay tuned. Also, I’m curious to know if anyone out there has had issues with existing apps post-Google Play.
Also, FYI, do not subscribe to newspapers or magazines through the Kobo store if you have a Vox. You have to get them through Press Reader, Zinio, or just download the proprietary app (e.g. NY Times or Wall Street Journal) from Google Play directly.