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Amazon’s ‘Test Drive’ Android VM Lets You ‘try apps before you buy them’

Amazon created a virtual machine dubbed as “Test Drive” that allows you to test out any app from their store in your browser before you buy.

Amazon’s Test Drive is basically just Gaikai for mobile phones — its purpose is simply to sell apps, nothing more. But imagine this for a sec: what if you could access your own smartphone data, instead of the mostly blank slate that Amazon provides here?

Amazon Test Drive

The one downside to Test Drive is that you have to be at a PC and it currently doesn’t work if you’re browsing on your mobile device. Amazon states:

Clicking the “Test drive now” button launches a copy of this app on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), a web service that provides on-demand compute capacity in the cloud for developers. When you click on the simulated phone using your mouse, we send those inputs over the Internet to the app running on Amazon EC2 – just like your mobile device would send a finger tap to the app. Our servers then send the video and audio output from the app back to your computer. All this happens in real time, allowing you to explore the features of the app as if it were running on your mobile device.

This feature should be popular among consumers and will help to drive users to Amazon’s new App store. In a market where features drive consumers, Amazon has unleashed a top notch product that may draw users away from Google’s own Marketplace.


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