AppQ: Warm-starting App Recommendation Based on View Graphs

Current app ranking and recommendation systems are mainly based on user-generated information, e.g., number of downloads and ratings. However, new apps often have few (or even no) user feedback, suffering from the classic cold-start problem. How to quickly identify and then recommend new apps of high quality is a challenging issue. Here, a fundamental requirement is the capability to accurately measure an app's quality based on its inborn features, rather than user-generated features. Since users obtain first-hand experience of an app by interacting with its views, we speculate that the inborn features are largely related to the visual quality of individual views in an app and the ways the views switch to one another. In this work, we propose AppQ, a novel app quality grading and recommendation system that extracts inborn features of apps based on app source code. In particular, AppQ works in parallel to perform code analysis to extract app-level features as well as dynamic analysis to capture view-level layout hierarchy and the switching among views. Each app is then expressed as an attributed view graph, which is converted into a vector and fed to classifiers for recognizing its quality classes. Our evaluation with an app dataset from Google Play reports that AppQ achieves the best performance with accuracy of 85.0%. This shows a lot of promise to warm-start app grading and recommendation systems with AppQ.



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