What Do You Do When Paid-For Android Apps Disappear?

What Do You Do When Paid-For Android Apps Disappear?

After purchasing my Galaxy Note 3, I did what most people do — I loaded all of my favorite Android apps. One of these was the paid app Weatherbug Elite,  which I had originally bought for the G1. Unfortunately, it is no longer supported or in the Play Store — the only available version is the unpaid (and ad-riddled) version.

I hope this doesn’t signify a trend. However, now that most Android apps and games are free — with either ads or in app purchases — it doesn’t surprise me to see paid versions of other apps going away. After all, the developer of WeatherBug, Earth Networks, would like a constant stream of money coming from the ads versus not making a dime from someone like me who bought the app 6 years ago.

While I don’t like the fact that an app I paid for is no longer there. In this case, I loaded the free Android app anyway, as I have not found anything that comes close to what WeatherBug has done for me for so long.  The sad part is if they decided to have users pay again, I would do it; I liked the ad-free version enough that I would pay for it again. Instead, I get ads for things I don’t care about and probably wouldn’t buy.

What would you think? Be it Android Apps or iOS apps, if an app you had paid for disappeared from the app store, would you switch to another app entirely? Or would you load the ad-supported free version of that favorite app that had served you well for many years?

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About the Author

Joel McLaughlin
Joel is a consultant in the IT field and is located in Columbus, OH. While he loves Linux and tends to use it more than anything else, he will stoop to running closed source if it is the best tool for the job. His techno passions are Linux, Android, netbooks, GPS, podcasting and Amateur Radio.

12 Comments on "What Do You Do When Paid-For Android Apps Disappear?"

  1. That is really surprising – I know in iOS and also game sites like GoG and Steam, even if the company goes belly-up the app remains for those who bought it … and in some cases you can even get older versions.

    Is this a difference for Android? Is there no ‘my apps’ history listing it (son’t have an Android device with me now to check) … I thought you could track back to reload things?

  2. I think you can. I just installed the official Google Reader app without a problem.

    Made me sad that Google reader is still gone but the app does exist.

    Maybe it is a per-developer thing? If weather bug replaced the paid app with a free one and swapped it in the store there may not be anything you can do-just like once an app updates on iOS that’s it.

  3. I had this problem, and I found the app by scrolling through the huge long list of “My apps” in the Play Store app. Searching didn’t work. It would be nice if you could search within “My apps”, but searching only works for the apps that are in the Play Store. However, here’s a trick I just discovered. Go to https://play.google.com/apps in Chrome on a laptop, make sure you’re showing “My apps” only, and use the Find feature of the browser to search the page for Weatherbug.

  4. I have a backup of all my Android apps with Titanium backup, and even a nandroid backup. I have installed different ROMs, so that makes restoring much easier. It would also help if something went missing on the store.

  5. There’s an app in the play store called “Purchased Apps”, and it will show every app you’ve purchased, and download WeatherBug Elite (I just did it myself, although the weather radar live wallpaper doesn’t work anymore – bummer)

  6. I have the radar live wallpaper working on my HTC One. That, for me, is the main reason to go find Weatherbug Elite.

  7. You may be able to get it with other apps or apk downloads but as this app relies on Earth Networks infrastructure it will eventually stop working over time since it’s not being updated any more.

  8. Just tested purchased apps…I can download it but it was last updated in December with the ad supported version being updated a month ago.

  9. Carpediem06 | April 22, 2014 at 12:42 am |

    I agree…this sucks!! This was my favorite weather app and now its gone….the 4×1 widget is also gone..ugh!

  10. Carpediem06 | April 22, 2014 at 12:47 am |

    wow, this worked for me too! just went into “my apps”, selected “all” and scrolled down till I found it

  11. Tom Barrister | May 28, 2015 at 10:43 am |

    I know this is an old thread.

    If you paid for Weatherbug Elite, you can get it back with this direct Google Play Store URL:


    After the app installs, don’t leave the install screen yet. Click on the Menu button and uncheck “Auto-update” so that the free version doesn’t overwrite it in the future.

  12. It happend to twice. One time, it was a bug, the Store wasn’t properly linked to my account, for some reason. It was linked, but not the “purchases” part.
    The second time, it was an app that I’ve paid and that is no longer in the app store. I was able to redownload for free by browsing in my purchased apps section in Google Store. It’s the thing to do.

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