Palm’s App Catalog Experiencing Growing Pains

There was a sense of joy or perhaps relief when the first paid apps started appearing yesterday on Palm’s App Catalog. The tally put the App Catalog with over 125 apps, most of which still are free. Still in beta, the Palm App Catalog’s launch of paid apps suffered from a few issues, some of which aren’t resolved.

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Those who hit the store later in the evening were surprised to find just one paid app available, despite reports to the contrary making their way around the Interwebs. Palm had to remove the paid apps due to a “security issue” or should we say it was giving the store away, literally. Those who had downloaded “homebrew” apps found themselves offered an option to upgrade for free. Homebrew apps by definition is beta software and at times a limited version of what’s available as a paid version in the App Catalog. While some developers have received donations for their development in homebrew, it was not intended to offer free upgrades to those who downloaded the free version. Those with more known-how were also able to use the SDK to create spoof applications, which could then be upgraded to actual paid apps.

Those who were clamouring to spend money in App Catalog were hit with mysterious memory limits, despite having available memory on their Pre. It appears that Palm uses some sort of partion that used solely for apps. This would mean that despite having some of your precious 8GB available, your apps partition might be packed. As of now, the only way around this is to delete apps to make room for the new apps.

Palm has already addressed the security issue and paid apps are back online. To our knowledge, the memory issue still exists. So, how about you? What’s your experience been using the Palm App Catalog.

Palm Announces No Approval Process for Web Distribution

At a Palm developer conference, the company announced they would not have a review process tied to approval of applications for distributed via the web.  the Palm App Catalog.  According to Tech Crunch:

The first is that they’re allowing developers to fully distribute their apps via the web. What this means is that developers can simply submit their apps to Palm, and Palm will return to them a URL that they can then blog, tweet, do whatever they want to share it. When a person then clicks on that URL they can easily install the app. And while Palm is providing the URL, it is not going to be reviewing the apps in any way — a clear dig at Apple’s approval process.

The company is also waiving the $99 for developers if their webOS apps are going to be open source. Developers in the audience were also recipients of a free Palm Pre and one month of Sprint service, which is a necessity because the Palm Pre cannot be used without wireless service.

[via Palm on Twitter]

Palm App Catalog Offering Paid Apps

Palm today introduced the first paid app in the Palm App Catalog. Air Hockey, which was demoed to us on the Palm Pixi a few weeks back, is the first app that is available for purchased. Air Hockey is priced at $1.99 and already claims to be the #1 best selling game. Given it’s the only paid app, it’s not exactly a hard task to accomplish. Update: Palm has also added “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire“, priced at $4.99.

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So will paid apps be worth the wait? Are you already downloading Air Hockey? Let us know your thoughts  in the comments or in our Palm forums.

Video: First Look at Bad Kitty Twitter App for webOS

The selection of Twitter apps is sure to grow when Palm’s App Catalog introduces paid apps and a promising app on the horizon is  Bad Kitty.  The app is still under development, but looks very promising. Forget about the awesome name and app icon, Bad Kitty offers an interesting UI (user interface) and design. Check out the video of Bad Kitty running in the Pre emulator and let us know what you think.

Thanks Akitayo!

Moving the Palm App Catalog in the right direction

Palm today is rumored to be introducing paid apps into the Palm App Catalog. It’s still not clear if this will mark the removal of the beta tag that had adorned the store since it was launched back in June. Since it’s inception, the App Catalog has seen a slow, but steady stream of free applications. The process of downloading apps is seamless and borrows from the highly successful App Store model developed by Apple. The frustration for many users has been the lack of applications and we’re hoping that the introduction of paid applications paves the way for an increase in the quantity and quality of apps.

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Much of this frustration has been offset by the availability of homebrew apps, which numbers well over 200 applications. This week, a  developer voiced his frustration with the process of getting free apps accepted into the official catalog. In Palm’s defense, the task off getting a fully functional App Store running is not easy and will only improve in time. The company has hired Ben Galbraith and Dion Almaer to help run their developer program. The two founded Ajaxian.com and led a team creating developer tools for Mozilla. Making it easier for developers to get both paid and free apps in the App Catalog should thankfully be part of their mandate. Galbraith was quick to respond to concerns voiced by Jaime Zawinski, a move that shows Palm is committed to getting this right. Making it easier for developers to submit free applications results in more free applications for end users through the traditional outlet.

Offering developers the opportunity to sell their applications will certainly expand the App Catalog. We’re guessing that some application developers were likely sitting on the sideline until this feature was introduced. Even existing applications will get a boost in functionality at a price. Pivotal Labs’ Tweed will be available as a paid app. It will share similarities to the free app, but with a host of new features.

The App Catalog’s process has been slow, but methodical. Today marks a big step in the right direction. What are your expectations? What’s on your checklist of apps you’d like to see today? What price are you willing to pay for that app? Sound off in the comments or in our Palm Pre forums.

Rumor: Paid Apps To Launch Tomorrow

With the release of webOS 1.2.0, we suspected that today would mark the launch of paid apps in the Palm App Catalog. According to a PreCentral tipster, the launch will occur on Friday. That’s right, tomorrow could be the first signs of paid apps.

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To get prepared, we’d suggest you set up an account within the App Catalog. Simply launch the App Catalog, tap on the menu at the top right and create an account. You’ll need a MasterCard or Visa in order to purchase apps.

An interesting feature is that apps are tied to your Palm profile. If you delete a paid app, you can always download it again for free. This way if you decide to move to a Palm Pixi or the next greatest webOS device, your apps move with you.

So the day is finally upon us? What are your expectations? What apps are you hoping to see come tomorrow?

[via Pre|Central]

New Apps Available in Palm App Catalog

Palm today has included a number of new applications in the Palm App Catalog. All of the applications are currently available for free. Many expected yesterday might mark the release of webOS 1.2, offering the capability for owners to enter their credit card information and for developers to start charging for apps. Today’s new apps include:

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  • m:Vampire
  • m:Mafia
  • GolfPinFinder Demo
  • Guitarist’s Reference
  • YPmobile For Palm Pre
  • Greeting Card Messages
  • bWeather
  • SNAKE
  • Go To Tool Lite
  • Tic Tac Toe for WebOS
  • FreeWeather
  • Photo Fun – Spot The Missing Pieces (Free)
  • Photo Fun – Spot The Difference (Free)
  • TMaps – Philly

Have a favorite? Let us know in the comments.

Thanks joek71 for the tip!

Palm App Catalog To Feature Paid Apps on September 24th

There had been some anonymous tipsters telling our friends Pre|Central that September 24th was the go live date for the introduction of Palm’s App Catalog and now that information has been verified by a company timeline (pictured below) that was acquired by All Things D. According the timeline, application sales go live on September 24th.

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We’re thinking this will likely introduce a new, faster approval process and of course you’ll have all the new features that are planned for the webOS 1.2 update. All things considered, next Thursday is shaping up to be a pretty exciting day for Palm Pre owners.

New Apps Available in Palm App Catalog, Survivors Ready Edition

Palm today offered up a number of new applications in the Palm App Catalog. Seems to be a regular occurrence and a welcome one. Once paid apps are introduced (possibly next week), we’re thinking that the adding of new apps will happen with such regularity that it won’t even be newsworthy. For now, fire up the App Catalog and you’ll see a number of new applications including one for Survivor Samoa, which airs tonight.

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The new apps include:

  • Survivor Samoa
  • P2GoogleVoice
  • Ditto
  • DeadMan
  • Dot Game
  • Chess for webOS
  • Reversi
  • PicHunt – Space Explorer
  • PicHunt – Pets
  • PicHunt – Vintage
  • P2Snippets
  • MediPDA
  • Send My Location for webOS
  • TipCalc
  • Hebrew Calendar Trial Version

Have a favorite? Let us know in the comments or in our Palm Pre forums.

Google Voice App Among 10 New Apps in Palm App Catalog

Palm yesterday introduced ten new applications to the official Palm App Catalog, the most notable being gDial Pro, an application that works with Google Voice.  Google Voice apps for the iPhone were the subject of major controversy after they were removed from Apple’s App Store. The incident even prompted an inquiry from the FCC. In addition to gDial Pro, you’ve got eight other applications that are available as a free download direct from the App Catalog.

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  • AccuRadio: Offers hundreds of radio stations allowing you to stream from a selection of genres.
  • Local Concerts: Provides you with personalized concert updates from your favorite artists based upon your location
  • Simple Bible: Includes the full text of the Bible with a range of ebook features
  • Currency Converter: Provides conversion rates for popular international currencies.
  • 420 Wallpaper: Brings you a selection of San Francisco poster art that allows you to utilize as wallpaper on your Pre.
  • Forbes: Provides financial data and stock quotes.
  • Video Poker: Ad supported game of poker that is sure to be a great time killer for poker fans.
  • Checkers: The classic boardgame, on your webOS device.
  • Lights Out: A puzzle game where the goal is to turn off all the lights.

With these new apps, the total of Palm App Catalog apps stands at 67. We like the momentum and of course the new apps. Have a favorite? Let us know in the comments or in our Palm Pre and Pixi Forums.