1. Daniel.Black's Avatar

    With all the hype going on these days surrounding the recent acquisition of Handango by PocketGear, I thought I would take a look at possibly putting some of our themes and games there to sell.

    Now don't get me wrong, I love the service and support that having a MobiHand store provides, but as they say, don't put all of your eggs in one basket and since PocketGear bills itself as "the world's largest mobile app store", I thought it might be worth taking a look.

    First off I was already optimistic from the start. I mean hey, how great must a company be to come in and remove the thorn in the backside of developers that Handango was?

    The registration process was extremely easy, but "strange". By that I mean that either PocketGear is not based in the United States or the folks putting together the words aren't all there. As an example, during the registration process the system asks for your "Given Name" instead of "First Name". I know what you are thinking, that I'm being knit picky but that's not the case. Instead I'm trying to lay out a pattern of things that sort of made me pause and say, "huh?".

    Moving on, I put in our other MobiMadness information and hit finish. But then on the summary screen it did not show the support email I put in and has two blank sections for something called a "Tax District". What the heck is a tax district? So I went back in to see if I had missed something and but there is no place to put in the mysterious tax district data.

    This just illustrates another interesting thing about the PocketGear developer area and that is that it is sorely lacking in help. The most obvious and painful part is when trying to enter your products. Which is a great segue into that particular black-hole of pain and frustration.

    It should be noted here that I might be just a tad bit jaded, because I like the MobiHand developer area and have gotten spoiled by it's ease of use and intuitiveness. (read: shameful plug)

    So back to PocketGear, I select add product and a nice pop-up appears and sort of prompts you for the information and based on your inputs it alters the needed information. Now that sounds all good and well, until it comes time to actually upload...well your files. Anyone that works with BlackBerry apps, knows that themes and games are divided into upwards of 10+ files because of a restriction on file size for transfer to the BlackBerry. But on the PocketGear pages there is only one place to enter a single file and there is little to no instructions or help to guide you. Then add in the fact that when it comes to entering your price you are forced to enter it in Euros and the rabbit hole gets deeper and deeper.

    The last straw for me was when the pages demanded that I assign a full version and a mobile version but didn't give any instructions on what these meant or how they are delineated within the PocketGear system. Ultimately I opted to delete our game (Mars Lander) from the system and wash my hands thoroughly.

    This was not the outcome I had hoped for and unfortunately in my humble opinion, this sub-par interface sort of reminded me of another one that I hated, and it just so happened to be from the company (read: Handango) that PocketGear just acquired.

    For a company as big as PocketGear, I truly expected better. My conclusion is that I would not recommend PocketGear to my fellow developers at this time.
    Now I'd love to hear what your experience has been, so feel free to comment.
    02-25-10 09:20 PM