Searching for apps can be a frustrating experience.
While both the App Store and Android Market have made strives to improve app search and discoverability, much work remains.
Finding apps by function within Google or Bing can also be irritating, as you usually just get a list of links that is only sometimes relevant.
Enter Quixey. The app search engine, currently in private beta, identifies apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Windows, the web and and specific browsers. It seeks to synthesize the fragmented information about the app ecosystems within one site.
Quixey offers a two-fold purpose: finding a specific app by name or discovering those with a similar premise. For example, searching for “stream music” brings up a large number of apps that promise to do this.
The results can be aggregated by a specific platform or displayed in one long list. Along with app names are snippets of information about each app that is garnered from multiple sources on the web. Click each app’s name to get an informational page that is very much like what you would get in the App Store or Market. There are some extras, however, like YouTube videos or tweets with similar content.
The search terms are also compared to the apps’ descriptions, which can lead for some awkward results. For example, the first of the autocomplete entries when searching for “time” was Sex Position: The Game because it was offering a “limited-time sale.”
Quixey is the way forward. Its most compelling feature is the ability to quickly find out if that app on your iPhone is also available on Android or in an iPad version. This is especially useful if you are already in the browser and don’t want to launch iTunes or pick up your device to do the search.
Score a beta invite if you can, because this is going to be a service that pushes app discoverability in the right direction.