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Developer “Better Android” May Be Victim of Mistaken Identity in Knock-Off Crackdown

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News of Android injustice burns through the Internet as fast as news of the next iPhone. (Next iPhone? What? Where?) This time, the wronged party is Better Android, a legitimate Android developer that suddenly found their account suspended. Thus, if you bought one of their apps, such as Better Keyboard, and need to re-download it, you’ll find yourself out of luck. The Better Android guys plead ignorance on why they got suspended, but from comments on their announcement, a theory has emerged.

Officially, Better Android has been suspended for violating the developer agreement. They claim to not know why. Clarification from Google is pending. A run-through of their app list on AndroLib reveals no obvious red flags.

Better Keyboard 8

However, their commenters have discovered another developer named “Better Android Apps” whose offerings include apps named “Lowe’s” and “NetFlix”, as well as one called “Android Checkout” to help you check your Google Checkout account (using your Google Checkout credentials, of course). Maybe I’m being paranoid, but this guy sounds pretty shady to me.

This is pure speculation at this time, but I’d be willing to bet that Better Android has gotten caught in a crackdown against Better Android Apps. The two names are easily confused (probably by design of the latter), as various people have proven. Better Android’s blog is called “Better Android Apps”. If I didn’t know better, I’d think they were the same developer too.

But again, this is an unconfirmed theory at this time. For all I know, Better Android could have been hiding porn in an icon pack. But seeing as they could be easily confused for this other, apparently unscrupulous developer, I’m inclined to give them and Google the benefit of the doubt.

Alleged Apple fanboi, accused Android apologist, and confirmed Microsoft MVP for touch and tablet Mark Sumimoto a.k.a. Sumocat dabbles in all areas of mobile computing with a focus on Windows-based Tablet PCs and pen input. A mobile computing enthusiast since 2004, he pioneered the field of ink blogging via his personal blog, Sumocat's Scribbles. His current tools include a Fujitsu Lifebook T900, TEGA v2, and iPhone 4. Email: sumocat [at] notebooks.com

6 Comments

  1. Little Droid

    08/06/2011 at 1:50 am

    No mistaken identity. This developer had multiple copyright-infringing apps as recently as last month, as you can clearly see on http://www.androlib.com/android.developer.better-android-jqn.aspx : Disney icon pack, Mario icon pack, Xbox icon pack, etc. “Better Android” is a repeat copyright offender and they finally got banned. It’s very disingenuous of them to still claim they have no idea why there banned.

    • Arthur Sdp

      08/06/2011 at 11:10 am

      Sorry, but you do not get your WHOLE dev account suspended, when your a recognized app developper of some hyper popular apps, if some two or three of your free apps (that wasn’t available anymore, anyway) have some copyright infrigement issues. At worst you get those apps suspended. And honestly most of copyright infrigement issues are not enforced by Google, so it’s really strange, and I think the name confusion more probable. 

      • Little Droid

        08/06/2011 at 8:11 pm

        It wasn’t just “two or three”, I counted at least 18 going back to 2009.
        Why *wouldn’t* Google ban a repeat offender?Not to mention that they’re using the “Android” trademark without permission or attribution.

        • Samuel Marano Jr

          08/07/2011 at 12:53 pm

          Dude do you troll on every site? Did Better Keyboard not work with your Gophone or something?

  2. TROLLZ!

    08/07/2011 at 8:53 pm

    BetterAndroid just needs to stop playing the victim. They clearly violated the developer agreement which they agreed to by submitting any Android app… Google is in the right here. BetterAndroid had committed multiple copyright infringements on material, and as per the agreement, they aren’t supposed to do that. and punishment for a repeat offender is suspension. granted they did have a great keyboard, but just because they are highly rated, doesn’t meant they are immune to punishment

  3. Kwaynem3

    11/19/2011 at 1:27 pm

    I will not buy anything from better android ever again I loved better keyboard it was perfect for me, there is not another keyboard out there like it and it can be simply duplicated. I feel robbed I paid for the app. and then with out any compensation they take the app. away and tell me I can buy the app again from amazon.  That is BULL $H@. Ok so I buy from amazon then what 3 months later better android leaves amazon and ROBS more people who tried to support them any ways. Better android is bad bad business!!!

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