China Blocks Android Market and Gmail – For How Long? Plus, Alternatives

October 10, 2011
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If you’re an Android user, the two biggest things for you are most likely using are Gmail, and the Android market. However, if you’re living in China, these resources might not be at your disposal anymore. As you can see in the image below, the market.android.com website is blocked in Beijing, Shenzen, Inner Mongolia, Heilongjiang Province and Yunnan Province.

This is not the first time that China has stripped its citizens of the Android Market. TNW reports that Chinese Android customers had been complaining of the same issue back in 2009.

In addition to the Android Market, the following have also been or are currently blocked:

  • Google+
  • Gmail
  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Android Market Alternatives

For those of you who cannot live without the Market, TechRice has provided us with a very nice list of alternatives:


Wandoujia (豌豆夹)

Wandoujia, an Innovation Works startup, is a mobile apps manager that bills itself as “iTunes for Android.” It’s PC desktop client that hosts most of the most popular app stores in China–the local ones that is, but the Android Market is not included.

It provides an app search across all of the markets it supports. Anytime one of them has an update for your app, it will also update for you.

Apart from apps, you can also backup your phone’s contacts, messages and even the apps installed for future system reinstalls.

Tencent, China’s largest cloner, also recently launched an Android app manager that challenges Wandoujia.


GFan Forum (机锋网)

GFan is an online forum. Internet forums were once completely dominant and are still an important form of online social networking in China. Users share millions of different types of content, including attachments, product info, etc.

GFan is an Android-specific forum. The site’s categories are divided by Android phone models, with an independent area for downloads.As i’m sure you can imagine, piracy runs absolutely wild.

GFan also provides a mobile client for its forum with a search feature that allows you to search for app attachments shared by other users.


MIUI.com

This is another online forum, by Xiaomi, that provides downloads for the latest MIUI OS and also user-shared apps. The forum runs on a point system where each download requires certain number of points (usually one). To earn points, all you have to do is interact in the forum, so it’s pretty much free anyway.

There is no point going through all of the local Android markets because there still isn’t much differentiation. But there are couple notable ones for you to check out:

AppChina, Ndoo Market, and HiAPK.


Source: The Next Web

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