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Following on from an earlier question that I posed on how to free up space on my Android phone it became clear that a key issue is to request that more developers allow their applications to be moved to the SD card.

What is the best way to let the developers of my favourite apps know of this request?

I considered giving them a low rating in the market and writing in the comment that I would give them 5 stars if they included the "Move to SD card" option. However since I really like the applications and want them to be widely adopted to encourage further development on them I don't really want to turn away potential new users by giving a low rating.

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6 Answers 6

up vote 12 down vote accepted

If you want to provide feedback and/or do have a feature request that you want to have answered it would be best to write an eMail provided in the Android Market. It's located below the description and images of the app.

Also you could check out the website if the developer does have a bugtracker and/or forum (which is often the case).

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I considered giving them a low rating in the market and writing in the comment that I would give them 5 stars if they included the "Move to SD card" option.

Please, please, please don't do this. Us developers hate it when we are "threatened" with ratings. "5 stars if you do X", usually when X is the most random and obscure feature request, often not related to the app.

The rating of an application should be based off it's current quality. If it's missing a feature that you think would be good for it or if you encounter a bug, then email the developer.

The problem with rating down an application (that does not completely deserve it) is that the user typically does not change their rating, even if their "threatened" feature request was added. Additionally, developers cannot respond directly to comments to make the user aware that they added the feature or fixed that bug. If you email the developer, then they will be able to contact you back!

In the case of "Move to SD Card" option, it might not be recommended to do such a thing. For instance, if an application has widgets, it is not recommended to move to SD Card. See more examples and info here.

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I'd like to add that there is no way for a developer to contact a commentator from a market comment. That's why I also don't like bug reports or feature requests there, because I can't ask the commentator for more input. The comments in the Android market are meant to tell other users what you like and what you don't like about the app. –  Flow Oct 1 '11 at 20:12

Don't give them a lower rating !

I , for one , really look at the rating to see if a program is worth investigating. A fine program , just without the option to move to SD , is not, all of a sudden, a bad program.

Look at their web sites, or at an email address visible in the market of in the program.

If none is found , clearly specify it in the comments, but do not give it a worse reading.

At least, that't my opinion, here :)

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If "Move to SD card" is an important feature for someone, they should rate the app lower if it doesn't have that. When I rate an app, I'm giving it a rating for how it works for me, not what I think other people should rate it. –  Al E. Dec 6 '10 at 12:09
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There are applications that are not able to be put onto SDCard, due to some features that need to be within the system's borders, i.e. Widgets, so it's not fair towards the developer for rating the app lower due to some of Android's restrictions. –  keyboardsurfer Dec 7 '10 at 0:32

I've seen quite a few apps where the developer specifically says to leave feedback on their website, not on the Market comments. Remember that if you open up the details for an installed app from your Downloads list in the Market app most of them have a "Visit the developer's website" link.

Apparently they can't see any more of the comments than we can and don't get a way to search through them or see historical comments, so your comment is very easily lost in the list quite probably before they ever get a chance to see it, whereas if you click the link to go to their website most of them have somewhere that you can leave constructive feedback and requests (normally either blog post comments or a forum).

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This is a good question, and one that I changed my mind on after reading each of the responses. After some thought I'd say consider your audience.

The audience for the comments is the Android community. Most devs probably look in there but some might not. You should rate and comment on the app honestly, and with the intention of providing a useful resource to other Android users. If you want to point out that it lacks some functionality, then go ahead, but first off be sure you are correct, and that it is functionality that is possible. As far as "5 stars if you do X" comments, it isn't a very clear and efficient way to critique the app.

To communicate with the developer, you should email or post in their support forum if they have one. It gives them the opportunity to respond, ask follow up questions, correct any misunderstandings and possibly educate you on how to better utilize their app and the platform.

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Every app has an associated e-mail address, most also have a website (on which you may find a contact form, Facebook/Twitter account or other means of communication). Use these to get in touch.

Feel free to leave your request in the comments, it may be useful information for other users, but you don't have to give an unnecessarily harsh 1-star rating at the same time. Unless it is an app that attracts hundreds or thousands of comments, I suspect that the developer will read every comment that is posted anyway, regardless of the rating. If you give the app an artificially low rating you are hurting the developer. A lower average rating means fewer downloads. Also, it's counter-productive. Like anybody else, developers don't like being threatened/blackmailed.

Send a polite e-mail and you are more likely to get the response you want. Appeal to their ego. Tell them how awesome their app is, how you can't live without it and how your life would be complete if only they would add the feature you want.

In the specific case of SD card installation, this is such an incredibly simple thing to implement that, if you let the developer know that somebody wants it, they will almost certainly add it in the next release.

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