Does Android need a new app store?

Also in today's open source roundup: Six desktop Linux mistakes, and how to use the Lantern browser to view blocked websites

android apps

Does Android need a new App Store?

The Google Play store is arguably one of the best app stores available on any platform. But no store is perfect, and the Play store certain has its share of faults and problems.

A writer at Android Pit recently wondered if a new Android App Store would be a better bet for users over the long term.

Eric Herrmann reports for Android Pit:

With over two million apps housed within it, the Play Store is Android’s most important resource. But we have to be honest: the mass of apps is rather onerous. Many apps are faulty, do not look good, or have too much advertising. So it often takes several attempts before you find the right app for the task. But what would a perfect app store look like?

The search for the right app within the largest source of Android apps is not fun. For every app that requests one too many permissions and looks to spy on you, there is another that looks terrible and barely works. Others still opt to cover your display in advertising and annoy you with notifications.

The problem: in the Play Store many bad apps sit right beside the good apps. While there are alternative app markets for Android, none of them contain all the apps that you will be looking for.

The number of apps in the Play Store is probably already high enough. If there was ever a goal to surpass the number of iOS apps, that has long since been achieved. Now it’s time to play catchup in quality. Because if the number of bad apps increases still further, the general user perception towards Android will not improve. Until then, iOS users have a powerful argument against Android; Google, with a bit of manpower and a plan, could counter.

More at Android Pit

Six desktop Linux mistakes

Desktop Linux has come a long way from where it started, and it’s gotten much better over the years. But it has also had its share of problems. A writer at Datamation recently examined six desktop Linux mistakes.

Matt Hartley reports for Datamation:

Ever since I first tried Linux on my desktop years ago, I’ve found myself wincing at what I felt were avoidable blunders. This observation doesn’t affect one distro more than another, rather it’s ongoing issues I’ve watch in utter amazement happen time and time again.

No, I’m not giving a free pass to proprietary operating systems as they also have their share of epic blunder moments. But with Linux on the desktop, I guess you could say it just hits a bit closer to home. Remember, these are not merely bugs – I’m also talking about avoidable issues that affect folks even if they don’t realize it.

1. The state of Linux pre-installed stinks

2. Needless upgrades

3. Bugs and regressions

4. Abandoned software

5. Linux Audio

6. The constant bickering

More at Datamation

Use the Lantern browser to view blocked web sites

If you’re someone who has to deal with web sites being blocked for one reason or another, you might want to check out the Lantern web browser. It will let you view censored web sites on your Linux computer.

Umair Riaz reports for Noobs Lab:

Lantern is an open source, free software that allows reliable and secure access to open Internet. It is Internet proxy tool developed to access blocked websites anywhere in the world and it is cross-platform available for desktop OS (Linux, Mac and Windows), as well as for Android.

Lantern automatically detects whether or not a site is blocked and then accesses the blocked site either through Lantern project servers or through Lantern users running as access points in the uncensored world. If a site is unblocked, Lantern gets out of the way, and your browser accesses it directly to give you the fastest possible access.

Lantern encrypts all of your traffic when you are accessing a blocked site, but Lantern does not change traffic to unblocked sites in any way. This means a network observer, such as a censoring government or an ISP, cannot read your traffic to blocked sites. Lantern users acting as access points can see the website you’re accessing and where you’re accessing it from, but the actual content you are reading from or posting to that site is not visible to them because it is encrypted over HTTPS.

More at Noobs Lab

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