Amazon’s Appstore for Android devices will soon be available in nearly 200 countries, including new regions such as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, India, South Africa, South Korea, Papua New Guinea and Vatican City.
The app store will be rolling out internationally in the coming months, although developers can start submitting their apps now and indicate whether or not they’re interested in global availability.
The wider roll-out is a smart move for Amazon. The company is keen to build an app ecosystem for its latest line of Amazon Kindle Fire tablets, and to prove to high-profile developers that there is support both from consumers and the industry.
Given that the Kindle Fire runs on Google’s mobile operating system, however, it makes a lot of sense for the company to make its dedicated app store available on so-called ‘pure’ Android devices too. Additional sales will again entice more developers to the platform, and also improve Amazon’s overall revenues.
The app store is unique because it enables developers to build apps and games using Amazon’s Web Services (AWS) platform, which includes GameCircle services such as leaderboards, achievements, friend requests and ‘Whispersync’, which saves a game-state across multiple devices.
Amazon is also pushing a number of e-commerce features, including 1-Click purchasing, an API for in-app purchasing and A/B testing. The significance of these tools can’t be underestimated. Developers are looking to increase their profits, but are often restricted by the perceived value of apps by consumers. Now that we’re all used to paying 99 cents for an app, anything higher seems rather preposterous.
In-app purchases and microtransactions are proving increasingly important then. Sticker packs for instant messaging apps, or additional characters in a fighting game are common ploys to drag additional cash from consumers.
Amazon says that when it looked at 500 games that used in-app purchasing through its app store, GameCircle-enabled mobile games earned 83 percent more than those without.
“Allowing developers to target distribution of their apps and games in even more international countries is yet another important milestone as we strive to serve consumers and developers globally,” Mike George, Vice President of Apps and Games at Amazon said.
“Many of our existing developers have localized their apps and games for international consumers, and we look forward to working with new developers that have been waiting to bring their apps to more Amazon customers across the globe.”