The number of Apps available for Googles Android is expected to reach 140,000 within the next couple of weeks as the market place becomes increasingly competitive. While still lagging behind the number of apps available for the unlocked iPhone4 by an estimated hundred thousand Android is increasingly becoming a respectable alternative for those attracted by the variety of third-party software available for the iPhone.
However when comparing the two markets the quality of Android apps are often brought into question. This is because unlike Apple, who review and check every App that they allow to be sold or downloaded, Android apps are subject to very little quality control. This means that many apps are malicious or in some cases just useless.
An example of malicious software is the recent news in the headlines that many third-party apps were transmitting users GPS location and phone number to advertising servers which many people have seen as a severe breach of privacy.
However this isn't always the case. One successful and safe Android app is the Geolocation based Foursquare which has just released version 2.0 to Unlocked Motorola Milestone Android users. Foursquare utilises the GPS function on phones to allow users to 'check in' to physical locations so they can show friends where they have been.
As this shows, the Android app market still has a lot to offer but users may have to be more aware and perhaps tech savy if they are to avoid installing malicious content. It is worth noting however that Google dismiss this criticism citing that “Not only must each Android app get users' permission to access sensitive information, but developers must also go through billing background checks to confirm their real identities, and we will disable any apps that are found to be malicious.”