By now you may have heard of GetJar Gold, the alternative app store’s answer to the “Free App of the Day”. For the holidays there are more than 100 new apps available for free, all of them normally paid, and many were also featured as part of Google’s 10 Billion Apps promotion. If you’re a recent Android convert who missed out on the 10 cent app deals, here’s a chance to get a lot of the same titles, and keep your dime for a down payment on a cup of coffee. In order to showcase all of these free apps at once, they’ve created an HTML5
catalogue catalog, and it’s a great way to quickly add some free applications to your phone or tablet.
Like Google’s promotion the apps are mostly games, including high-profile paid titles like Age of Zombies, Majesty, and Super KO Boxing 2. But there’s also a refreshingly wide variety of utility apps, including the excellent and normally expensive Splashtop Remote Desktop. To facilitate easier navigation on the large catalog page, GetJar has added alphabetical navigation to the first pane. Just tap on a letter to instantly go to its relative horizontal position, then swipe left or right to see more apps. It’s a pretty ingenious method of presenting your wares on a touch interface – while desktop users are pretty locked into the the idea of a vertical scroll, the horizontal swipe is a much more natural motion for phones and tablets.
Of course, you’ll have to deal with the normal pitfalls of third-party app stores. The free “purchases” you make on GetJar will not show up in the Android Market. Instead, you’ll need to install GetJar’s primary application from their website, then browse either the on-device app store, the mobile website or the holiday catalog. Thankfully, you do not need to set up a new account to start using the free apps, but that means that your “purchases” won’t be saved, either – if you uninstall one of the paid apps, you’ll have to pay for it once the price returns to its normal value.