Someone call Yogi Berra. It’s déjà vu all over again. At least I think.
After Google announced Google Buzz yesterday, and indicated an app would be available for Android, I searched the Android Market for it using the keyword “buzz.” Second from the top of the results is what appears to be the official app. It’s called “Google Buzz” and it carries the already familiar UNO-inspired bubble logo. So far, so good.
All looks legit, except for one thing: the author. “Spartan Coders” is listed, not Google. Further, the app currently has a 1.5 star rating with comments such as “does nothing.” Most real Google apps are justifiably rated 4.5 stars.
This raises several questions.
Most obvious: is this the official sanctioned Google Buzz app?
I doubt it.
As I’ve written before (Scam alert: Android Market littered with Apps of questionable origin and intent), Google’s loosy-goosy, open-door approach to Android Market is littering the place with all sorts of trash.
Despite the best of intentions, Google needs to realize the world, especially a high profile mobile app store, is a spammer’s paradise. Yes, it’s noble to be open. But we Android users need better assurances. Better quality control. Better security. I am dubious of any app on Android Market not made by a reputable developer. After all, when you install these apps you potentially open up all your personal information for unscrupulous use.
Secondly, if this indeed proves to be a non-Google version of the app, then how in hells-bells (to borrow a much Tweeted expression from Cinequest co-founder Halfdan Hussey) did they allow that to happen?
Again, only if.
Alarming that that they can’t keep these things under control. It’s the sign of a company perhaps a little out of control. Nothing that can’t be fixed. But still!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m an Android fan through-and-through. My trusty Droid goes everywhere with me, and I rely on it tooth-and-nail for our business. There just appears to be some rough edges here and there.