Alternative distribution method

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SalieriC
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 3:50 am

Alternative distribution method

Postby SalieriC » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:11 am

Hello.

Okay, now this may sound weird and somewhat paranoid, but I don't want to connect my phone to Google. Yes, I'm aware of the fact, that there is a Google OS on my phone, but I'll change to Cyanogen Mod the second my warranty runs out. In the meantime I want to minimize my connection to Google. So far I was perfedctly fine w/ using play store alternatives, especially F-Droid. But there are several other alternatives which support paid apps. My request is simple: Please, Exophase, go for an alternative app store! Or find another method of distributing your emulator. (And do it fast, I'm starving to give you my money.)
I would buy DraStic instantly, I would buy it twice, I would donate you a cup of tea and send you a thank-you letter the moment you decide to sell DraStic any other way. Everything which does not involve Google would be fine by me. Please, please, please, find a way to sell your stuff to geeks like me.
Exophase
Posts: 1697
Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:08 pm

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby Exophase » Sun Jun 07, 2015 1:27 pm

What other stores do you know of? They'd have to allow emulators and preferably have some licensing facilities that aren't completely trivial to defeat w/o modifying the binary. F-Droid is of course not an option, since it's for FOSS apps only.
SalieriC
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 3:50 am

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby SalieriC » Mon Jun 08, 2015 12:50 am

Of course F-Droid is not an option. But since I believe in an open-sourced free world I felt the urge to mention it.:-P
I'll list you the stores I know of w/o looking deeper into their guidelines, so you will have to choose for yourself wether it's suitable for you or not. Amazon doesn't allow emulators I believe, so this one is not an option as well, but others may do.
  • Slide Me
  • Samsung Galaxy Apps
  • AppsLib
  • Mobogenie
  • Aptoide

There are more but these may be the most popular ones except from GetJar which is most likely not an option as well. There are also ways to distribute apps directly like PowerAMP does (although it requires to use the Google Mail client I believe). But that could make you more effort than it is worth (but would give you 100% of the income).
Is there anything in the list which looks good for you? And thank you for not saying no yet.
TkSilver
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2015 3:30 am

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby TkSilver » Mon Jun 08, 2015 1:16 am

Samsung galaxy apps is suposed to be samsung devices only. Also a big issue is if the app "store" offers licensing at least on par with google store's own version. There are already some pretty crippled versions of pirated DraStic on the internet. (crippled because to remove the license check you have to alter the program itself and exo or probably more likely lordus (I think he handles the android specific parts) has made it that id=f those parts are altered DraStic messes up on purpose. If he was to sell a copy of drastic without that check it would be like making a giant yellow sing that says "please come here and steal my work", since there would be a clean working 100% legit copy of DraStic with no way of telling if it was purchased.

I think the samsung app store does do the necessary license verifications, but I am fairly certain most of the others do not.
SalieriC
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 3:50 am

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby SalieriC » Mon Jun 08, 2015 12:51 pm

TkSilver wrote:Samsung galaxy apps is suposed to be samsung devices only.

I do use a Samsung device and almost 1/4 of all smartphone users across all current operating systems are using a Samsung smartphone. That's a lot, so it could be worth.

TkSilver wrote:If he was to sell a copy of drastic without that check it would be like making a giant yellow sing that says "please come here and steal my work", since there would be a clean working 100% legit copy of DraStic with no way of telling if it was purchased.

That's nonsense. Look up GOG.com. These guys are freaking awesome. They sell DRM-free games and a lot of them are new and they and the developers do make money nevertheless. This is because people appreciate having a game which does not expects them to be pirates unless they prove otherwise. People like to pay for the actual game, not for DRM. I would gladly pay 20€ if Exo would sell me a copy of DraStic w/o any copyright protection at all and as an .apk. Just Because I could be sure that he trusted me as an honest customer. I believe w/o stuff like SecuRom, the Ubisoft junk (whatever they called it) and Steam, there would be less piracy. And look at Minecraft as a final example. One of the most successfull games in history, sold exclusively by Mojang themselves w/o any DRM or copyright protection at all except for the account which is in fact a neccessity to play online.
If a developer decides to distrust his customers however, I accept this as long as they don't force me to (metaphorically) stand naked in front of them to prove I'm honest or to force me to use something made by a company I dustrust (Valve, Google, etc.). And unfortunately this is the case right now. That is why I started this humble request to distribute DraStic over other app stores as well. Because I don't want to use the Google Play Store.
TkSilver
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2015 3:30 am

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby TkSilver » Mon Jun 08, 2015 3:26 pm

For the most part I do agree with you completely securom, Safedisk, and persistent online verification are major issues and not very satisfactory solutions for both developers of software and users of software. I also have 0 issue with you not trusting cretian companies like valve and google, though personally I happen to thing the one time online verification of google play licenses on devices that are designed to be online connected is not too intrusive for me.

Here is the thing even if you discount the number of topics and sites a simple google search of "DraStic cracked" or other such terms brings up. Even if you can ignore all the gog based torrents pf games that exist because they are superior versions with little to no drm. (Personally I do use gog for a large portion of my computer games due to both liking older games, disliking drm and wanting to encourage companies to release more of their clasic collections) Not everyone has the same beliefs as you. Part of what you accept as a sacrifice when you decide your (privacy, information, money, ect.... ) is not trusted in the hands of a mega corperation, is that you lose access to the benifits that using that service gives you. Ie. If you distrust Sony (not a bad choice either with all the server hacks) you can play your PS3 just not online with out giving over information, or if you do not trust them even that far they you lose access to playstation only games and services. That is your right as a consumer, that is also the consequence of your decision.

Exophase wrote:What other stores do you know of? They'd have to allow emulators and preferably have some licensing facilities that aren't completely trivial to defeat w/o modifying the binary. F-Droid is of course not an option, since it's for FOSS apps only.


Exo has stated he wants a store with liccensing facilties if he is going to offer DraStic in annother store. The consequence of that decision might be that he does not get as many sales as he could. The thing is just as I believe in your right to distrust google and not want to use their store app I also believe Exo has the right to trust in them and their measures they take. If you stick around the board long enough you will see that both Exo and Lordus trust and help their customers a great deal and ask for our help in the beta to test out new features and bug fixes. Just because a developer does not want to open themselves up for piracy does not mean that they distrust their customers.

As for the Samsung store I just mentioned that it only serves samsung products. I personally use a samsung android tablet and said nothing about that store not working only that it serves samsung devices only.
SalieriC
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 3:50 am

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby SalieriC » Mon Jun 08, 2015 4:30 pm

We should not start an in-depth discussion about DRM. Maybe Googles approach isn't that bad. But there still is the fact, that Google wants to maximize their profit. And that works greatly by collecting and using personal data of their users. That is the reason why I do not use Google Play and it is the reason why I do not connect my phone to Google. The LVL isn't that intrusive imo. And that leads to where we where before: I want to throw my money at the developers, but I have no chace to do this w/o giving up my privacy. And that just sucks. And I think that is not faiir: forcing your customers to give up their privacy in order to protect you against some piracy. There has to be another way of selling software.

And yes, I am aware, that other stores will collect and use my data as well. But they are most likely not big enough to use them in the way Google could. That is why I believe spreading Information amongst different companies is better than giving one company everything.
But as I said: We should not start an in-depth discussion about DRM. I see were on the same side on this topic. That is fine and I think we can coexist peacefully.

I see that the Developers of DraStic are interested in their customers opinion. I noticed this the moment Exo has not said no, when he could. So that gives me some hope.
Exophase
Posts: 1697
Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:08 pm

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby Exophase » Mon Jun 08, 2015 5:09 pm

I understand how you feel about DRM, it's an ugly compromise and I'm not totally happy with it, Lordus and I have kind of wrestled with it. Maybe in the future it'll go away or we'll figure out something else that works.. with Android (moreso than iOS) a lot of apps offer "lite" versions that don't cost money and are ad-supported, and I assume don't use DRM. We might have that, but that's not good if too many features are cut or ads kill the experience or you don't want to connect to the ad servers. Personally I hate ad-supported so I've tried to avoid it until now, except for with the Chinese version which exists only because mainland Chinese users can't make purchases from Google Play. I mean, you can feel free to use that version if you want, but it's completely in Chinese.

GOG is kind of the quintessential example of DRM-free, and no one can deny that works really well for them. But unfortunately Android apps aren't like GOG. There the games are more niche and directed and there isn't much in the way of torrents and whatever for the games. Android APKs are automatically uploaded and cracked to a ton of websites. Even ones posing as legitimate app repos do this. People download them and aren't even aware that they were ever pay apps in the first place. We get a fair amount of volume of support requests from people who didn't buy the app - we know they didn't buy it because of anti-tamper triggers or because they're using some really old version. If there was no such protections we wouldn't know who bought it, but we'd probably get an even higher volume of support requests because at least with the anti-tamper stuff it becomes somewhat common knowledge that the cracked versions are unreliable.

These sites collect ad revenue and a lot of them pose as legitimate repos. In fact, two of the repos you've listed, Aptoide and Mobogenie, have ripped off DraStic APKs on them already. Those aren't exactly the type of sites I want to support.

Of course this doesn't rule out other stores. I'll talk more to Lordus about it - ultimately, it's going to be up to him, because anything on the Android side of things (and this would definitely be) is almost certainly going to be done by him. So he'll have to decide if it's worth it. I can tell you that he's at least interested in finishing up an OUYA version, so that's at least one other store, but that'd only be for OUYA and not your Samsung phone.
reeve
Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 6:44 pm

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby reeve » Mon Jun 08, 2015 7:53 pm

SalieriC wrote:[...]but I'll change to Cyanogen Mod the second my warranty runs out[...]

I'm pretty sure the Samsung Store won't work on Cyanogenmod even if you do have a Samsung phone, so that solution might not work for you :|
TkSilver
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2015 3:30 am

Re: Alternative distribution method

Postby TkSilver » Tue Jun 09, 2015 12:00 am

reeve wrote:
SalieriC wrote:[...]but I'll change to Cyanogen Mod the second my warranty runs out[...]

I'm pretty sure the Samsung Store won't work on Cyanogenmod even if you do have a Samsung phone, so that solution might not work for you :|


Oh yea forgot that small issue... the samsung app store does not even work on my tablet with a debloated (yes I consider knox to be bloatware) stock-ish rom. Though that does not mean that cyanogen may not setup their own store with license verification, actually I remember thwre was talk a while back of them wanting to do that among other things. There are also other OS that may have stores and be based on AOSP.

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