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February 19, 2015

David Isbitski

Amazon will be out at GDC San Francisco next month offering several opportunities to connect directly with you. Starting on Monday, March 2nd from 5:05pm to 5:30pm you can hear @MikeFHines talk about What Makes the Top 50 IAP Games Unique on the Amazon Appstore and lessons you can apply when generating revenue in your own games.

Then on Tuesday, March 3rd from 10am to 5:30pm we will be hosting an Amazon Developer Day covering games for Amazon Fire devices, how to build better cloud gaming experiences, reaching fans with Twitch, and applying in-app monetization best practices based on Amazon's IAP data. Technical evangelists from Amazon Appstore and AWS will be on hand to answer your questions as well as the Games Business Development team to discuss game promotion opportunities. We’ll also have devices for you to explore and test your games on, as well as a chance to win some Amazon Fire devices! Here is what the day’s agenda will look like. Click here to add a session to your GDC Scheduler.


An Overview of the Amazon Devices and Services for Game Developers
10am-10:45am

David Isbitski, Developer Evangelist, Amazon
Alf Tan, Head of Games Business Development, Amazon
Vlad Suglobov, CEO, G5 Entertainment

We will start the day off with an overview of Amazon's current developer ecosystem.  Learn how you can take advantage of AWS services specifically targeted for Game Developers, Amazon's Appstore and the new line of consumer Fire devices like Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick and Fire tablets, as well as monetization services such as in-app purchasing.  Plus, hear how G5 entertainment has had success on the Amazon platform from G5 CEO Vlad Suglobov.          

Top Tips for Porting Unity Games to Fire Devices
10:45am-11:30am

Jesse Freeman, Developer Evangelist, Amazon  
In this talk, we'll cover important tips for porting Unity games over to Fire TV, Fire tablets and Fire phone. Through code examples, we'll demo how to support multiple resolutions for pixel perfect Orthographic and Perspective Cameras, abstracting player input to support keyboard, controller and touch, and optimization tips for C# for the best performance. We'll also show how to deploy to our devices and get your game up and running on Fire OS. You'll walk away knowing what it takes to publish to the Amazon Appstore and help expand your game's user base.

How to Evolve Players into Fans
11:30am-12:00pm

Peter Heinrich, Developer Evangelist, Amazon
We’ve analyzed the top mobile games to see what best practices make them stand out from the crowd. Several trends emerging now will amplify those best practices, and games will have more opportunity than ever to excel. In the future, the top games will have fully realized fan bases that will drive their user acquisition and engagement engines. That fan base will include players but also content creators, advocates and potential new customers —  this will open up a wider range of monetization options.  Come see how top mobile games drive more engagement and revenue and learn how to you can do this with your own game.

Catered Lunch
12:00-12:30pm

Build and Deploy Your Mobile Game with AWS
12:30pm-1:30pm
Dhruv Thukral, Gaming Solutions Architect, Amazon
Tara Walker, Technical Evangelist, Amazon
Developing a successful mobile game today is about more than just the game:  Users expect backend services like user authentication, downloadable content, and social features. Using our AWS Mobile SDK for iOS and Android, it’s easier than ever to build a game with these services.  This session will provide a step-by-step approach to add features to your game such as user identity management, dynamic content updates, cross-platform data sync, and more.  We’ll demonstrate how to use the AWS Mobile SDK to securely interact with services such as Cognito, DynamoDB, S3, and EC2.  Finally, we’ll provide a few common architecture patterns and scalability tips for AWS game backends.

How We Made a Game No Fun
1:30pm-2:15pm

Mike Hines, Developer Evangelist, Amazon
There are lots of suggestions about how to make a game fun.  Best practices are everywhere, but you can't just follow them blindly.  To create a fun game, you have to figure out how best practices integrate into your specific game.  Come see what we did wrong, and what we learned along the way.       

Connecting with Your Customers - Building Successful Mobile Games through the Power of AWS Analytics
2:30pm-3:30pm

Nate Wiger, Principal Gaming Solutions Architect, Amazon
Free to play is now the standard for mobile and social games.  But succeeding in free-to-play is not easy:  You need in-depth data analytics to gain insight into your players so you can monetize your game.  Learn how to leverage new features of AWS services such as Elastic MapReduce, Amazon S3, Kinesis, and Redshift to build an end-to-end analytics pipeline.  Plus, we’ll show you how to easily integrate analytics with other AWS services in your game.

Deploying a Low-Latency Multiplayer Game Globally: Loadout
3:30pm-4:15pm

Nate Wiger, Principal Gaming Solutions Architect, Amazon
This is a deep-dive straight into the guts of running a low-latency multiplayer game, such as a first-person shooter, on a global scale. We dive into architectures that enable you to split apart your back-end APIs from your game servers, and Auto Scale them independently.  See how to run game servers in multiple AWS regions such as China and Frankfurt, and integrate them with your central game stack.  We’ll even demo this in action, using AWS CloudFormation and Chef to deploy Unreal Engine game servers.

How Game Developers Reach New Customers with Twitch
4:15pm-5:15pm
Marcus Graham, Director of Community & Education at Twitch
Ernest Le, Director Publisher & Developer Partnerships at Twitch

Twitch is the largest live video platform and community for gamers with more than 100 million visitors per month. We want to connect gamers around the world by allowing them to broadcast, watch, and chat from everywhere they play.  In this session, learn game developers are creating engaging experiences and reaching new customers via the Twitch platform.

Mobile Ads Team at GDC

The Mobile Ads Team will be at GDC and has created a special offer just for attendees!

While attending GDC anyone who integrates the Amazon Mobile Ads API for the first time into their app or game will receive a $100 Amazon.com Gift Card.* The Amazon Mobile Ads API is easy to integrate and delivers highly-relevant mobile optimized ads from Amazon and brand advertisers ensuring a great experience for users. Members of the Mobile Ads team will also be on hand in booth #2429 to help you throughout the event.

Amazon Fire TV Twitch Broadcast

Then on Wednesday, March 4th we will be broadcasting live from GDC with a couple of special guests from 4pm to 7pm. The event is open to the public from 4pm to 6pm and you do not need to be a GDC pass holder to attend. Simply stop by the AWS Pop-up Loft on Market Street between 4pm to 6pm PST and join us in person for the Twitch stream.


We will be showcasing several new Amazon Fire TV games as well as interviewing the game developers who created them. Not at GDC? No worries, you will be able to watch the stream live on Twitch here from 4pm to 7pm PST.

If you’re a gamedev at GDC this will be a great opportunity for you to speak directly with Amazon Appstore, AWS and Twitch experts all in one place. Hope to see you there!

-Dave (@TheDaveDev)

*Visit exhibit #2429 for more details. Send us an email at amazon-mobile-ads@amazon.com with your Amazon Developer Portal registered email ID to qualify. Existing apps already sending ad requests do not qualify. Existing developers who integrate the Amazon Mobile Ads API into another qualified app for the first time are eligible for the offer. One Amazon.com Gift Card per participant while supplies last. Amazon.com Gift Cards ("GCs") may only be redeemed towards the purchase of eligible products on www.amazon.com GCs cannot be reloaded, resold, transferred for value, redeemed for cash or applied to any other account.  Amazon.co.uk is not responsible if a GC is lost, stolen, destroyed or used without permission.  See www.amazon.com/gc-legal for complete terms and conditions. GCs are issued by ACI Gift Cards, Inc. All Amazon ®, ™ & © are IP of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon may modify or cancel this offer at any time.

 

February 10, 2015

Corey Badcock

Did you miss the Twitch live stream of The 18th Annual D.I.C.E. Awards? We are excited to congratulate two games from the Amazon Appstore on their big wins! The D.I.C.E. Awards are the video game industry’s most prestigious honors recognizing outstanding contributions and achievements in gaming. Congratulations again to all of the nominees from the Amazon Appstore on this honor.

Winners from the Amazon Appstore

Monument Valley: Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

Publisher: ustwo Studio Ltd

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

Presented to the individual or team whose work represents the highest level of achievement in designing a unified graphic look for an interactive title.

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft: Mobile Game of the Year & Strategy/Simulation Game of the Year

Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment  

Mobile Game of the Year

The Mobile Game of the Year shall be the game developed for a mobile device platform such as a mobile phone, tablet or convergence device. These games demonstrate a skilled usage of the devices software and hardware features to offer a unique and addictive play experience

Strategy/Simulation Game of the Year

Strategy games are defined to be those titles in which the user directs or manipulates resources to create a set of conditions that result in success as determined within the confines of the game. These games can offer the user the chance to simulate or to virtually reproduce an experience, real or imaginary, which would require some form of equipment. Strategy games emphasize the planning of tactics rather than the execution.

The full list of winners can be found here.

Ready to Submit Your App or Game?

  • Click here to register for free as an Amazon Developer. 
  • Click here to download the Amazon Mobile SDK. 
  • Click here to submit your app

 

February 02, 2015

David Isbitski

Today’s mobile developer must engage customers with app experiences that run across an array of devices and platforms yet remain responsive and powerful.  The AWS Mobile SDK can help bring the power of the cloud to your apps while enabling you to build high quality mobile apps quickly and easily across multiple platforms including iOS, Android and Fire OS. 

AWS recently launched an update to the AWS Mobile SDK for Unity developers. The developer preview of AWS Mobile SDK for Unity helps your games handle cloud storage along with identity and user state management directly from within the Unity developer environment. The AWS Unity SDK contains a set of .NET classes that enables games written with Unity to utilize AWS services. Supported AWS services currently include: Amazon Cognito, Amazon S3, and Amazon DynamoDB. The AWS Unity SDK also contains sample code that illustrate how to call AWS services from a Unity Game. The AWS Mobile SDK for Unity is compatible with Unity 4.0 and onward, and supports both Free and Pro versions.

My colleague, Mudeem Siddiqui, elaborates more on some of the key benefits here:

Safeguard AWS credentials: When you use Amazon Cognito, your game is provided with temporary, limited-privilege credentials that it can use to access AWS resources. This means your game can access the resources it needs and that you can follow security best practices by not hard-coding credentials.

Store and sync across devices: Amazon Cognito allows you to store user data for your games, such as user preferences and game state, in the Amazon Cognito sync store. You can then sync this data across a user’s devices to help make their experience consistent across their devices. Amazon Cognito can automatically send a silent push notification to a user’s devices when data in the sync store changes so you can synchronize the latest data right away.

Store game assets in the cloud: With Amazon S3, you can store your game’s assets such as images and videos in the cloud and download them at run time. This reduces the size of your game’s binary, thereby avoiding the AppStore Over the Air download limit.

Store game data in a NoSQL database: You can store your game data that is shared across users in Amazon DynamoDB, a NoSQL database that offers high throughput, and low-latency at any scale.  


For more information on the AWS Mobile SDK for Unity check out the following links:

If you haven't registered for an Amazon Appstore account yet, you can create a free developer account here and immediately get started testing your app on Fire devices. For more information about getting started with Amazon Fire devices and the Amazon Appstore, check out the following free resources:

-Dave (@TheDaveDev)

 

 

 

 

December 16, 2014

Paul Cutsinger

When we launched the Amazon Maps API in November 2012, we wanted to enable you to quickly and easily add mapping functionality to your Fire apps. With today’s release of the Amazon Maps API v2, we build on that functionality to offer an even richer mapping experience featuring fast and fluid 3D vector maps, including 3D landmarks, for your Fire tablet and Fire phone apps. The Amazon Maps API v2 also supports drawing API’s (circles, polylines, and polygons), fragments, multiple maps, and more, enabling you to deliver a customized mapping experience to your end users.

The integration process was straightforward since the API was the same as Google’s API. It was a matter of changing the import statements, GoogleMap to AmazonMap. There were no code or workflow changes made to our app and we were ready to submit.  – Ajit Pol, Sr. IT Project Manager, Parkmobile

Android Developers Can Easily Reach Fire tablet and Fire phone Users

There is no better time for Android developers to reach the growing Fire device customer segment with their existing Android app, or an entirely new app.

For existing Android apps using Google Maps API v2, the Amazon Maps API v2 provides a simple, API parity solution for developers. Porting apps is a simple four-step process (detailed documentation):

  1. Add a reference to the Amazon Maps API v2 Library;
  2. Update your Android manifest to declare the FireOS API level and reference Amazon Maps API v2;
  3. Rename Google specific namespaces and classes to their Amazon equivalent; and
  4. Remove your project's existing dependency on the Google Play services library.

For new Fire tablet and Fire phone apps, the Amazon Maps API v2 provides all the needed features to enable rich mapping functionality within your app. Add location context to your app by displaying high-quality 3D vector maps with fluid panning and zooming. Customize your map with markers to show a specific location on your map. Draw polylines to connect two or more locations or draw polygons to highlight a neighborhood or circle an area on your map. Amazon Maps API v2 allows you to add these features and more to your application. Examples include:

Markers to show specific locations

Polylines to connect multiple locations

Polygons to circle an area

 

Magnifying Glass - Enabled by Amazon Maps API v2

Scratch Off Map - Enabled by Amazon Maps API v2

The Amazon Maps API v2 is compatible with Fire OS 4.5.1 and higher which is available on 3rd and 4th generation Fire tablets and Fire phone.

Getting Started is Easy

  1. Set up your development environment for creating Android apps for Fire phone and Fire tablets;
  2. Download the Amazon Mobile App SDK and configure your project to use the Amazon Maps API;
  3. Register your app to download and test map tiles;
  4. Review the developer guides and reference materials to learn about the Amazon Maps API classes and methods:
  5. Test and submit your app to the Amazon Appstore.

 

December 10, 2014

Jesse Freeman

Today we are announcing full support for publishing HTML5 apps to  Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick as part of our existing HTML5 web app publishing toolset. This now opens up a new opportunity for web developers to publish HTML5 powered apps to the living room. In addition, developers with web apps already published to Fire tablets and Fire phone will now be able to release their existing hosted web apps on the Fire TV family of devices using the same workflow they are already using. To help support web apps on Fire TV devices we have made additions to the Amazon WebView, which powers web apps on our platform, to give developers access to the following features:

  • Support for the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick Remotes
  • Support for analog input from the Amazon Fire TV Game Controller and other gamepads.
  • Access to our In App Purchase (IAP) API via JavaScript
  • A new starter template app optimized for 10 foot experience for creating Fire TV HTML5 media apps

By adding full support for Fire TV devices, developers can publish the same web app across all of our Fire devices and take advantage of the great performance enhancements the Amazon WebView offers.

Powered by the Amazon WebView

The Amazon WebView supports everything you have come to expect from the mobile version of Chromium. This includes WebGL, GPU optimized CSS3 Transition and fast JavaScript code executionWeb developers can now sell their web apps at a premium price, use IAP (via our JavaScript API), and have their app distributed right alongside native Android apps and games.

HTML5 Apps on the TV

In addition to our launch partners, we are excited to see what developers come up with to help push HTML5 forward onto the big screen. Through the Amazon Appstore on Fire TV devices developers can now deploy web apps and games to a whole new audience. HTML5 is a great cross platform choice for developers and we are now enabling them to reach even more customers than before. While traditional media apps make sense on the Fire TV, we are also looking forward to seeing HTML5 games and media apps evolve on this new platform. With support for WebGL, Gamepad API and accelerated canvas, high quality web games can now run on the TV. This opens up an entirely new world to HTML5 game developers hoping to build console quality games with the tools and frameworks they currently use to reach millions of web and mobile web gamers every day.

Getting Started

Bringing your web app to Fire TV is easy.  If you already have an app optimized for the 10-foot experience, you can get started by downloading the Web App Tester from the Amazon Appstore on your Fire TV or Fire TV Stick. Once installed, you simply enter in the name of your app and its URL online.

Likewise, you can also supply a .zip file to package up your app by following these instructions. After all the details are supplied, you can see how your web app will run on the Fire TV via the preview option.

If you are looking to get started building Web Apps for Fire TV or Fire TV stick, we have also provided an open source template on GitHub. Make sure to check out the online documentation that will walk you through everything you need to know about publishing HTML5 apps to the Fire TV family of devices.

Related Links

- Jesse Freeman (@jessefreeman)

 

December 02, 2014

Mike Hines

One of the top priorities for most developers is acquiring new users. Apart from organic channels like referrals, top charts and reviews, developers can also use paid ads to drive downloads and installs. Starting today, developers will now be able to target Fire tablet customers with Facebook mobile app ads

Drive More App & Game Downloads on Fire Tablets

Facebook’s mobile app ads for installs can help you acquire new users on Fire tablets. When a customer is in the Facebook mobile app or on Facebook on mobile web on their Fire tablet, they will see an ad for your app with a call to action button like “Install Now”. When the customer taps the ad, the Amazon Appstore client will launch to the detail page of your app, and the customer will be prompted to install the app.

These placements and the exposure they provide can drive significant traffic and help you grow your installed base quickly.

Creating a Facebook Ad is Easy

Facebook ads are easy to create and come with flexible targeting options to reach Facebook’s large audience of users effectively.


If you choose to integrate Facebook’s SDK, you will be able to track how well your ads are converting from impressions and clicks to eventual installs. You can also alternatively use SDKs from one of Facebook’s Mobile Measurement Partners to measure performance of your mobile app ads.

Create an ad for your app on Fire tablets by visiting Facebook’s Mobile App Ads for Installs to learn more and get started.

 

November 24, 2014

Peter Heinrich

An important success metric for any app is engagement: a measure of how frequently and how long people play your game. Amazon GameCircle is designed to help developers increase engagement through player Achievements, Leaderboards, and saved game syncing across multiple devices. Once you integrate GameCircle, players can seamlessly play games and interact with other gamers across mobile devices.

Now GameCircle social APIs offer new ways for you to improve player engagement by making it easier for players to connect with new friends.  Using a simple API you can now pull GameCircle friends data into your game for players who use Amazon devices. Players using Amazon devices are able to create a profile for themselves, including a nickname and profile image, and can add other GameCircle players to their friends list. You can access this data and display it in your own games or use it to leverage custom social interaction features.

Make It Easy for Players to Find Friends

Players with friends play longer, but not all players have real-life friends playing your game right now.  The GameCircle Friends API helps you solve that problem by enabling you to show your customers a list of suggested friends. By integrating a ‘Find Friends on GameCircle’ button into your game, players can easily click-through to their GameCircle Friends page to discover new friends who are also playing your game and add those suggested friends in just two clicks. GameCircle Friends doesn’t require players to grant your app permission or sign-in to access friends, so players can find and add new friends quickly and get back to playing your game sooner.

Add GameCircle Friends to Your Game

Add GameCircle Friends to your game today to increase player engagement.  Getting started is easy:

 

November 11, 2014

Peter Heinrich

Developers have been using Amazon to store data in the cloud for some time, using the highly reliable and scalable Amazon Web Services like S3 to provide durable object storage and retrieval. Amazon Cloud Drive offers that same convenience to consumers, and millions use it to securely access their digital content from their desktop and mobile devices. Now you can build on that functionality and connect users to their Cloud Drive content from within your own apps. Enhance your photo editing app, for example, by allowing users to browse photos they have already stored in the cloud.

A New REST API

Today Amazon Cloud Drive announced the launch of its public API platform, which provides a RESTful interface for upload, download, manipulation, and organization of data in the cloud. You can use this API to integrate these services in your app and offer added flexibility to your users. Your app can provide direct access to their Cloud Drive storage and the content they keep there, as well as use it to preserve game settings, preferences, and other application state on their behalf.

For example, let’s say you have a note-taking app that stores its data locally. Using the new Cloud Drive API, you could allow users to enable synchronization with their personal storage in the cloud. Saving notes to their Cloud Drive would make the data accessible to your customers wherever they run your app—without requiring you to set up and manage servers, storage, or load balancers.

In addition to the convenience of this direct connection to their Cloud Drive from your app, customers also benefit from the reliability and safety of the underlying AWS platform on which Cloud Drive is constructed.

Less to Build, Faster to Market

When you connect your users to their own Cloud Drive storage, you can preserve and protect their app data without having to build an online data management system of your own. Cloud Drive is built to be robust and to scale transparently, so you never have to worry about availability or performance. The Cloud Drive API doesn’t impose any restrictions on file type, so your app can work with all kinds of content.

Many app developers have already integrated support for Cloud Drive into their mobile products. You can see some of these on the newly launched Cloud Drive App Gallery page. They include photo print services, content creation and editing apps, and content aggregation apps.

You can also hear first-hand what it’s like to integrate with Cloud Drive. Listen to Jason Toy, CEO of Filepicker, discuss the process and how it added value for their customers.

Integration Is Easy

Check out the Cloud Drive API Documentation for details on how to add Cloud Drive to your mobile apps. There is also a third-party SDK provided by Temboo to get you up and running fast.

-peter (@peterdotgames

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

October 27, 2014

Jesse Freeman

Less than seven months ago, Amazon introduced Amazon Fire TV, and it quickly became the best-selling streaming media box on Amazon. Today, Amazon is bringing the same experience customers love about Amazon Fire TV—ease of use, great performance, and vast selection—to a smaller and even more affordable device.

Introducing Fire TV Stick, a tiny stick that connects to the HDMI port on your HDTV for instant access to movies, TV shows, music, photos, apps, and games. Fire TV Stick is just $39 and is available for pre-order starting today at www.amazon.com/fire-tv-stick and will ship November 19.

As a thank you to Prime members, Fire TV Stick is available for two days only for just $19 on Amazon.com. Customers who are new to Prime can sign up for a free trial and also receive this special price. Eligible customers get a free 30-day trial of Netflix and Amazon Prime when they purchase Fire TV Stick.

The Most Powerful Streaming Media Stick

The Amazon Fire TV Stick has serious hardware specifications. Included inside of its streamlined thin case are a dual-core processor, 1 GB of RAM, 8 GB of storage, dual-band, dual-antenna (MIMO) Wi-Fi, support for 1080p HD video and immersive audio with Dolby Digital Plus surround sound. At its core, the Fire TV Stick is simple to set up and easy to use, just plug it into a HDMI port on your HDTV and you're ready to run apps and casual games like Monsters University, Ski Safari, and Flappy Birds Family in minutes. The Fire TV stick even comes with its own dedicated remote and of course you can also connect the optional Amazon Fire Game Controller.

Click here to learn more about the Fire TV Stick.

Android Developers Can Easily Tap into New Segment

Now is the perfect time for Android developers to get into the growing streaming device segment with their existing Android app or create something entirely new, designed specifically for the Fire TV Stick. In addition to media-centric apps, casual games that feature local multi-player options are also becoming very popular on these types of devices.  

Android developers will find that developing for Fire TV Stick is familiar, and optimizing their apps for the new controllers and TV display will not require learning a new language or new frameworks. Fire TV Stick runs Fire OS, which is based on Android. This means that it is easy to bring an Android APK to Amazon devices, including Fire TV Stick. Amazon Fire TV Stick offers Android apps a potentially new set of customers to engage with – all through the same Amazon Appstore.

Click here to download the Fire TV SDK and learn more.

Millions of Customers: Fire Devices, Android Devices, and Blackberry

The Amazon Appstore has never been available on a broader selection of devices and platforms.  Fire TV Stick is the newest addition to the Fire device family that includes recently released Fire tablets, Fire phone and Fire TV.  The Appstore is preloaded on all Fire devices, so when a developer submits their app to the Appstore they have the opportunity to reach customers no matter where they are and what device they’re using.

The Amazon Appstore for Android is also pre-loaded on millions of Android devices and hundreds of thousands of Android customers have already downloaded the Appstore on their own. We recently announced that the Amazon Appstore is preloaded on BlackBerry 10 devices throughout the world, giving developers access to even more customers. Plus, the latest Amazon shopping app fully integrates apps and games into the shopping experience enjoyed by millions of customers. So when customers are searching for products in the Amazon shopping app, they’ll also discover relevant apps and games that they may also enjoy.

Take Advantage of the Holiday Season Sales Spike

Fire TV Stick is launching just in time for the holiday shopping season. Amazon device activations historically surge during this period. According to Flurry Analytics, Christmas sees the highest number of device activations for Amazon—24 times the number for a typical December day in 2013, a bigger bump than other major tablet and smartphone manufacturers—so now is the time to develop a new app or bring your existing Android or web app to Fire tablets, Fire TV, Fire phone and Fire TV Stick.

Click here to submit your Android app or game.

Now is the Time to Submit Your App for Fire TV Stick

Reach new customers and expand your reach to the living room with Fire TV Stick.  Submit your app now to make sure it’s available when Fire TV Stick launches November 19th.

Additional Resources:

October 21, 2014

Lauren Stark

In the London are area? We'll be at two events later this month in your area. Meet 1:1 with developer evangelists, get answers to your technical questions, participate in the Appstore Port-a-Thon, get a demo of Fire TV, and learn how to port your desktop and mobile games to the living room.

Amazon Developer Day: Bringing Apps to the Living Room

Fire TV will be available in the UK this Thursday, and the Appstore team is hosting a free developer day at our London office on October 29th centered around bringing apps to the living room.

The Amazon Appstore Developer Day is designed to give you the essential tips, tricks and tools to distribute your app to Amazon customers. At the end of the afternoon, you will be able to publish your Android app directly to the Amazon Appstore.  At the event, our technical representatives will be on hand to provide support, answer your questions, and help you troubleshoot any issues.  We’ll have extra devices on-hand for you to use for testing.

Plus, we'll be giving away 2 tickets to Droidcon London and a Fire TV!

 

When: Wednesday, October 29, 2014 from 12:30 PM to 5:00 PM

Where: Amazon UK Offices at 60 Holborn Viaduct, London

Learn more and register: https://amazonappstoreuk.eventbrite.com

 

Droidcon London: Come Publish Your App

On October 30th and 31st, you can catch the team at Droidcon London.

Stop by our booth and experience the Fire Phone, Fire TV and Kindle Fire. Bring your APK and publish your app on the Amazon Appstore in as little as two hours! An Amazon evangelist will be on hand to help check compatibility and answer any questions about publishing your Android app on the Amazon Appstore. It’s easy and usually no changes are necessary because 75% of the apps we’ve checked just work! Each developer will be entered to win an Amazon device upon submission.

You can also hear our evangelist Paul Cutsinger talk about Responsive Game Design and Bringing Desktop and Mobile Games to the Living Room or try your hands on the Fire TV at the Droidcon Gaming Zone.

If you haven’t registered for Droidcon, use promo code AMAZON-DROIDCON-2014 and get 25% off.

 

 

October 21, 2014

Paul Cutsinger

Player engagement is the key to success for most mobile games, and Amazon GameCircle is designed to help developers increase engagement through player Achievements, Leaderboards, and saved game syncing across multiple devices.

Game developers using the Corona Labs SDK can now integrate GameCircle into their Android games using the Corona plugin. The Corona SDK enables developers to build mobile apps and games for multiple platforms including Amazon Fire, Android, and iOS devices. Developers program in Lua and call the Corona SDK, which is built on a C++/OpenGL platform to optimize for graphic applications.

Corona's GameCircle plugin implements nearly all of the GameCircle APIs, including submitting the local player's scores & achievement progress, displaying GameCircle overlays, getting achievement and leaderboard data and using Whispersync for Games to synchronize game progress across multiple devices. GameCircle Friends data is available through filtered leaderboards.

Here are some links to help you get started:

Learn more about GameCircle with the following links:


@PaulCutsinger

 

October 07, 2014

Paul Cutsinger

It started with a 90 second test to see if your Android app is ready to launch in the Amazon Appstore.

Then there was added support for Fire phone and screenshots from the actual device.

Now, you can get the results from your device testing even if you don’t have a developer account. So, grab your APK and get test results in 90 seconds.

Test your apps for Fire Tablets, Fire Phone and Appstore for Android in just a few minutes. 75% of existing apps and games we've tested require no changes before going live. You can find out whether your app has any of the common issues that can block publication on the Amazon Appstore. Our App Testing Service also gives you access to additional test results that show you how your app looks and performs on live devices. Start the test here.

@PaulCutsinger

October 02, 2014

David Isbitski

Today’s mobile developer must engage customers with app experiences that run across an array of devices and platforms yet remain responsive and powerful.  The AWS Mobile SDK can help bring the power of the cloud to your apps while enabling you to build high quality mobile apps quickly and easily across multiple platforms including iOS, Android and Fire OS.  

The AWS Mobile SDK provides access to AWS Mobile services, mobile-optimized connectors to popular AWS data and storage services, and easy access to a broad array of other AWS services.  Libraries, code samples, and documentation for iOS, Android, and Fire OS are all included so you can start building right away!

The second version of the SDK is now generally available after wrapping up a thorough Developer Preview. A lot of developer feedback was received during this preview and has been incorporated into this new update.  Jeff Barr via the Amazon Web Services Blog explains…

Version 2 of the AWS Mobile SDK has been available in Developer Preview since early July (See my blog post, New AWS Mobile Services to learn more). During the Developer Preview, many developers used the AWS Mobile SDK in their apps and provided us with a lot of really good feedback.

Today we are wrapping up the Developer Preview and making the AWS Mobile SDK Generally Available. You can download it here and get started with the AWS Mobile Services.

We responded to the feedback that we received during the developer preview and made a number of improvements to the SDK. You can find the details in the release notes section ( iOSAndroid). Here are some of the more significant improvements:

  1. The method count in the AWS Mobile SDK for Android has been reduced by 40% to 13K. This will reduce the size of the final APK and keeps you clear of Android's limit on the number of methods.
  2. The SDK supports offline sync using Amazon Cognito. The SDK queues requests made when the device is offline. The requests (pending sync operations) are executed when internet connectivity is available. Details can be found here.
  3. The AWS Mobile SDK for iOS now includes support for pre-signed Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) URLs. You can use these URLS to perform background transfers using the NSURLSession class.

To get started today with AWS Mobile Services check out the following resources:

 

-Dave (@TheDaveDev)

 

September 24, 2014

Mike Hines

The Amazon Appstore is now preloaded on BlackBerry 10.3 devices starting with BlackBerry Passport.  Starting today, hundreds of thousands of apps and games will now be available to Blackberry customers through the Amazon Appstore

A FREE high-quality paid app is also available through the Free App of the Day program, which gives customers one free paid app each day.  At Amazon, we are always committed to making it easy for our customers to easily find the apps and products they want and ensure they’re satisfied with their overall customer experience. Now we’re excited to extend that same commitment to the BlackBerry community. BlackBerry customers will have the opportunity to discover apps that are relevant to them based on personalized recommendations and download these apps with confidence using Amazon’s trusted payment options.

    

On the developer side, we’re focused on creating the best platform for developers to build, monetize and distribute their apps.  Our developer ecosystem starts with the Amazon Web Services platform for developers’ infrastructure needs.  We’ve got programs like Appstore Developer Select that provide advertising and merchandising benefits to developers so they can get their app discovered. And with services like In-App Purchasing, Mobile Associates, Mobile Ads and our virtual currency Amazon Coins, developers can find all new ways to make more money. Click here to learn more.

Getting Your App on BlackBerry Devices

Publishing your app on BlackBerry devices via the Amazon Appstore is easy.  If you’re an existing Amazon Appstore developer, you’ve previously chosen to distribute your app or game on “Non-Amazon Devices” and your app is compatible with BlackBerry Passport, you don’t have to do anything - your app is already available on BlackBerry Passport devices. 

If you’re an existing BlackBerry developer but new to the Amazon Appstore, click here to register for a free developer account and submit your app today.

 

September 19, 2014

David Isbitski

On September 9th, Amazon announced the updated Amazon App for Android – the primary Amazon shopping app enjoyed by millions of customers. The new Amazon App for Android phones provides an award-winning mobile shopping experience on hundreds of millions of physical goods and now enables customers to discover and purchase all of Amazon’s digital catalog - including Amazon Appstore apps and games – from one app. It’s never been easier for Amazon Appstore developers to reach new customers.

Reach Millions Of Customers on More Devices

Millions of customers already enjoy the benefits of Amazon Prime membership. The new Amazon App for Android combines the fast and easy mobile shopping experience customers have come to know and love with access to unlimited streaming of tens of thousands of movies and TV episodes from Prime Instant Video.  Now, your apps and games are directly integrated into that experience, and you have a new channel to reach customers. Current Amazon Appstore developers don’t have to do anything; your app is already included in the new Amazon App for Android.

                

Want your App included in the Amazon App for Android catalog?  Click here to register as an Appstore developer.

Make More Money with the Amazon Appstore

The Amazon Appstore has never been available on a broader range of devices and platforms.  It’s no wonder 65% of the surveyed developers also say that the Total Revenue achieved on the Kindle Fire is similar to, or even better than, what they experience with other major platforms.

The Amazon Appstore is integrated into Fire tablets, Fire TV and Fire phone devices. Earlier this month, we announced that Fire TV and Fire phone are now available in the UK and Germany. Back in August, we announced the expansion of the Amazon Appstore to 41 new countries, including Egypt, Indonesia, Singapore and Turkey. So publishing your Android app on Amazon means you reach customers from around the world.

The Amazon Appstore is not just available on Amazon devices. This announcement further expands the distribution of Appstore apps and games on Android devices.  And coming this fall, the Amazon Appstore will be preloaded on BlackBerry 10 devices globally, giving you access to more customers with Amazon.

How Do Developers Make Their App Available?

Most Amazon Appstore developers don’t have to do anything; as long as you clicked the box for “compatibility with non-Amazon devices” on the Developer Portal, your app is generally already included in the new Amazon App for Android. Developers who have a check within their app to see if their app was installed on the device by the Amazon Appstore will need to modify their code to include a less specific check to see if their app was installed by Amazon. Want your app included in the Amazon App for Android catalog?  Click here to register as an Appstore developer – it’s free.

Now Is the Time to Submit Your App

Submit your app today to get your app or game included in the new Amazon App for Android.  Most apps just work with no additional development required.

Click here to register for a free developer account.  Click here to test your app and get feedback within 90 seconds.

 

- Dave (@TheDaveDev)

 

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