Ronnie05's Blog

Profiling the Amazon Apps Store

Posted in Applications and User Interfaces by Manas Ganguly on January 8, 2011

This is the first in a three part series detailing Amazon Apps Store and its effects on a multitude of other factors

Amazon is preparing to open an Android app store to compete with Google’s Android Market, and has launched a beta portal where developers can submit applications for Android-based smartphones. The applications will be sold on the Amazon Appstore for Android, which the company expects to launch later this year. At launch, the Appstore will be available for customers in the U.S., and it will be compatible with Android 1.6 and higher. Users will be able to shop for applications from their PCs, which isn’t possible with the existing version of Android Market, or from their smartphones, and pay with their existing Amazon account. The store will carry free and paid applications.

The Deal

According to Techcrunch, “In some senses, this is the Android equivalent of Apple’s App Store — even more so than Google’s official Android Market”. Android Market doesn’t have an approval system, so developers can quickly submit and iterate on their applications. It also tends to have a lot of junky applications — things that crash on launch on certain devices, or apps with that occasionally have features that don’t work as expected. While Google’s terms do require descriptions to be accurate, the general attitude is to let the market decide what works, and it surfaces the top rated applications (most of the time) while letting the junk sink.

Amazon is taking an approach that is more in line with Apple’s. Developers who wish to appear on Amazon’s store have to get approval (Amazon says that the process is currently taking about a week). And Amazon is going to have slightly more stringent guidelines: applications have to work properly, have a defined functionality and should be safe. Android Market has many of these same requirements, but the difference here is that Amazon checks apps before they’re deployed to its store, while Google does so after problematic applications are reported.

The biggest departure from the Apple and Android stores involves pricing. Unlike Apple’s App Store and Android Market, where developers can set their price to whatever they’d like, Amazon retains full control over how it wants to price your application. Amazon will use a variety of market factors to determine what price it wants to use, and developers get a 70% cut of the proceeds of each sale (which is the industry standard). In the event that Amazon steeply discounts the application, or offers it for free, developers are guaranteed to get 20% of the List Price.

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  1. […] This is the second in a series of three posts detailing the Amazon Apps Store and its effects on other outliers!. Read part 1 of the post here. […]

  2. […] in a series of three posts detailing the Amazon Apps Store and its effects on other outliers!. Read part 1 and part 2 of the […]

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