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An Android app I made in a few hours makes $500/m from ads, and has 1M+ downloads on Google Play. It claims to be a radar detector for your phone, but that's not even possible (it's actually just completely random).

The description says that it is for novelty purposes, but the reviews show people believe it works and it has a placebo effect. Most reviews say things like "I drove past a police station and it went off! 5/5".

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.vox.radard...

It's funny to see it up in the top 20 of the Transportation category on Play, alongside companies that are heavily VC funded. https://play.google.com/store/apps/category/TRANSPORTATION/c...




No wonder you make money: charlatans often do. Take homeopathy for example, magic shops, so-called "healers" who manipulate your aura to make your cancer go away. Not to mention all the churches which have a very long tradition of exploiting by promising impossible things, just as you do.

You really should add something like "WARNING: this is just a simulator, it doesn't work in real world at all".


One thing is is fundamentally different than your examples: the money is coming from advertisers, not the users.


Actually the fact the the users don't pay for it is not relevant. You're still making a transaction with the user, providing them with a service, in exchange for them putting up with your ads. But in reality the service you say you're providing is false.


> The description says that it is for novelty purposes

And common sense really.


The extent of the technological capabilities of a device like a smartphone are far from common knowledge for the typical user. An app can allow your phone to perform the functions of a gps, why can't it allow your phone to perform the functions of a radar detector? I mean even people who know enough about their devices to know that the idea of it acting as a radar detector is unreasonable may not know what their phone IS capable of. How more technologically proficient users do you suppose are there who are completely unaware of the fact that their phone might have a barometer?


Your app description is highly misleading - the first three lines strongly give the impression it works. Even your "disclaimer" says "do not rely on it" rather than "this is complete bullshit".

Worst case this probably encourages people to slow down when driving and doesn't actually help them avoid tickets, but you're still being quite dishonest.


I'd say the worst case is that it might encourage people to drive faster, if they assume that the app will warn them of speed traps.


It's actually totally possible with crowdsourcing, and a lot of applications actually work, like Waze.

So people believing it works are not stupid, they can legitimately believe you're pulling that from a common database with an app that lets user signal radar or police cars.


The description clearly says "Your phone is able to detect strong radio signals, just like the ones directed at your car by police when measuring your speed.", and the reviews show people expect it to work by radar detection, not crowdsourcing. Many comments are police officers that tested it with their radar guns (and they of course realize it is fake).


Except, the FTC will bankrupt you with false and misleading claims like these. If it is pitched as a toy, that's one thing but you haven't. You're just lying.


This app should be reported as having a misleading description or at least it should be in the "games" category not in the "transportation".


Had he not pointed it out to us, nobody would be the wiser.


"I seriously didn't think it would work at all but to my surprise it did so I put my phone along side my $500 Valentine detector and they both went off same time"

amazing


Funniest thing I've read all day.


You should just make it detect a radar when it notices any hard acceleration. :P


It already is more likely to go off the higher your speed is. :P


This app should be reported as having a misleading description or at least it should be in the "games" category not in the "transportation".


This app should be reported as having a misleading description or at least it should be in the "games" category not in the "transportation".


This app should be reported as having a misleading description or at least it should be in the "games" category not in the "transportation".


This app should be reported as having a misleading description or at least it should be in the "games" category not in the "transportation".




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