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Appstore Publishing FAQ

Introduction

Introduction

This page contains frequently asked questions (FAQs) about publishing apps to the Amazon Appstore.

Amazon Appstore General Questions

Q: What can I do in the Amazon developer portal?
Using our portal, developers can distribute their mobile apps, digital software, and video games on Android, PC, Mac, and web-based platforms.

With Amazon’s self-service account management tools and marketing services, you can manage your mobile apps and PC and Mac software and video games, and market them to tens of millions of Amazon customers. Developers can also sell their mobile apps on Amazon devices. Learn more about developing for Fire tablets and Fire TV.

To submit your mobile app, digital software, or video game to Amazon, go to Submit Your App.

To learn more about submitting PC and Mac digital software and video games for distribution on Amazon, see PC and Mac Digital Software and Video Games.

Q: How will customers find my apps on Amazon?
Customers can discover and shop for apps on their Android devices. Amazon promotes your apps by using ecommerce and marketing features such as search and search refinement, browse, and recommendations based on customers’ past purchases. Customers can also search, browse, and purchase apps on Amazon websites in the U.S., UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Canada, and China.
Q: Which mobile operating systems does Amazon support?
Amazon currently supports the Android operating system on devices running Android OS 2.2 and higher.
Q: What is my revenue split with Amazon?
Amazon pays developers 70% of the marketplace list price for all sales.
Q: How much does Amazon charge for using its developer program?
The program is free. You pay nothing to create a developer account, use Amazon APIs, and submit apps.
Q: Can I list (or post) free apps?
Yes. You are welcome to give away free apps on Amazon.
Q: What’s the difference between an order and a download?
An order is a successful app purchase per unique customer ID. Once a customer has ordered an app, they can download it one or more times to a device by using the Amazon client.
Q: How do I start selling games and apps on Amazon?
On the developer portal, click the Create an Account button. The portal is a self-service tool that will guide you through account creation. After creating an account and accepting the Amazon Mobile App Distribution and Services Agreement, you can start submitting apps.
Q: I sell an app on Google Play. Can I submit the same app to the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Program?
Yes. The Amazon program is non-exclusive.
Q: Where can I see the Amazon Mobile App Distribution and Services Agreement?
When you sign in to the Amazon developer portal, you will see a link to the agreement at the bottom of the page. Review the current version of the Amazon Mobile App Distribution and Services Agreement
Q: Where can I find out about recent changes to the Amazon App Distribution and Services Agreement?
The most recent changes to the agreement are described here.
Q: Where does Amazon sell mobile apps?
Amazon Appstore apps are currently available to customers in nearly 200 countries, including the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, Japan, China, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, India, South Africa, and South Korea. Check the developer blog for more information on international availability.
Q: Why is my app tested on non-Amazon devices or from non-U.S. locations?
Some aspects of app testing for the Amazon Appstore may be carried out internationally. The testing process includes testing on a variety of devices, including both Amazon devices and non-Amazon Android devices, to verify that apps in the store function properly.

Submission: Account and User Permissions

Q: How do I change my contact information?
If you are the administrator of your developer portal account, sign in to the portal, click Settings, and then click Edit. Here you can edit your email address, account information, company profile, and user permissions.

If you are not the account administrator, ask the person in your organization who is the administrator to make any necessary changes.

Q: How do I change my company name?
To protect the security of your account, Amazon does not allow changes to your company name. You can request changes to your company name by using the Contact Us form.
Q: How do I change the information Amazon uses to pay me?
Only users with the administrator role can change payment information. In the developer portal, click Settings, click Payment Information, and then click Edit. Make changes as necessary and then click Save.
Q: How do I add a user to my Amazon Mobile App Distribution Program account?
Only users with the administrator role can add users. To add a new user, sign in to the developer portal, click Settings, click User Permissions, and then click Add New. You will be prompted to enter an email address and select a role or roles for the new user. When you’re done, click Save.

Amazon will send the new user an invitation email. The user clicks a link in the email to access the portal, and then creates their own password. The user will have access to the account until you remove them.

Q: What privileges does each user role have?
All users can manage their personal details, view their company’s profile, view their company’s apps, access Support, and initiate Contact Us inquiries with Amazon. Additional privileges include:
  • Administrator– This role has full access to all areas of the developer portal and can manage user permissions and payment information. The first user associated with an Amazon Mobile App Distribution Program account is the owner and retains sole administrator privileges by default. The owner is also responsible for all activities that occur under user accounts authorized to access the account.
  • Marketer – Other than administrator, this is the only role that can edit the company profile and content associated with apps (such as merchandising and multimedia). This role also can access sales reports.
  • Developer – Other than administrator, this is the only role that can upload app binaries.
  • Analyst – Other than administrator, this is the only role that can view payment reports. This role also can access sales reports.
Q: How do I remove a user from my Amazon Mobile App Distribution Program account?
On the developer portal, click Settings, click User Permissions, click Edit, and then click Remove access next to the user you’d like to remove. Click OK to confirm the action. Administrators cannot change the owner’s access.

Submission: App Details

Q: Where can I get an overview of the app submission process?
See [Submitting Android Apps to the Amazon Appstore][submitting-apps-to-amazon-appstore].
Q: Are there non-technical specifications that my assets must meet?
Yes. See the [Amazon Appstore Content Policy Requirements][appstore-content-policy].
Q: Can I use the words “Amazon,” “Kindle,” or “Fire” in the title of my app?
If you refer to Amazon or any Amazon product or service (including Kindle or Fire) in the title of your app, you must:
  • Refer to Amazon or to the Amazon product or service only in a way that describes the app’s compatibility or purpose, by using words such as “for” or “to.” Example: “Tips and Tricks for Fire Tablets”
  • Not include any Amazon logo, icon, or image in the icons for your app
  • Not imply any sponsorship or endorsement by Amazon, or otherwise mischaracterize your relationship with Amazon
  • Include the following statement in the product description for your app: “This app was not created or endorsed by Amazon.”

For more information, please refer to Trademark, Brand and Marketing Guidelines.

Q: What assets do I need to submit an app?
Amazon provides rich merchandising capabilities. App product pages on Amazon can display product descriptions and up to eight images and five videos. You can also submit a promotional graphic that will make it easier for Amazon to feature your app on Amazon.com.

While Amazon encourages you to submit as many merchandising assets as possible, the minimum assets required for submission are:

  • a small icon (114 x 114px)
  • a thumbnail (a larger version of the icon) (512 x 512px)
  • a minimum of three screenshots that accurately depict your app (1024 x 600px or 800 x 480px)
  • a promotional image that includes the name of your app (1024 x 500px)
Q: What specifications do my assets need to meet?
For details on the image assets required, see [Image Guidelines for Amazon Appstore Submission][asset-guidelines-for-app-submission].
Q: How can I be sure that my app includes “HD” in the title?
To ensure that customers have a great HD experience on Fire tablets, the following requirements must be met:
  • The app is designed for high-density screens (hdpi or xhdpi) and declares this support in the manifest
  • The app’s drawables are optimized for high-density screens (images can be rendered at native resolution)
  • The app uses the entirety of the screen (without letterboxing)
  • Video content in the app (if applicable) must be at least 24 frames per second and 720p (in video-focused applications)

If you believe your app meets these requirements and should be identified as HD on the product detail page, include the notation “please review for HD designation” in the Testing Instructions field when you submit your app.

For information about making your app look good on Kindle Fire tablets, see Screen Layout and Resolution.

Q: How do maturity ratings work for apps on Amazon?
When submitting an app in the developer portal, you tell Amazon about your app’s content in the portal’s Content Rating tab. Amazon will assign a summary maturity rating to your app based on the information you provide and on Amazon’s review of your submission, and then display that rating on the app detail page. Amazon reserves the right to assign maturity ratings for your app at its discretion.

Submission: APK Info (Binary Info)

Q: What screen resolutions should I consider when creating my APK?
You should consider multiple screen sizes and resolutions. The primary screen size categories are:
  • Small screen
  • Normal screen
  • Large screen
  • Extra-large screen

For each screen size category, the device’s display may be:

  • Low density (120 dpi)
  • Medium density (160 dpi)
  • High density (240 dpi)
  • Extra high density (320 dpi)
Q: Can I apply DRM to my app?
Yes. For each app that you submit to Amazon, you can choose to apply DRM or to make your app available without any rights management constraints. If you choose to apply DRM to one of your apps, you must use the DRM system provided by Amazon through the developer portal. To apply DRM, select an app in the My Apps section of the portal, and then click the Binary Files tab. Follow the instructions on the page.
Q: How does Amazon prepare my APK for distribution?
Amazon wraps your APK with code that allows Amazon to enforce our DRM (if applicable), collect analytics related to the app, evaluate and enforce our program policies, and share aggregated information with you and others regarding the program.
Q: What’s the maximum size for an APK?
If your APK is larger than 150MB, you will be directed to use the SFTP server instead of uploading directly via the developer portal. If this is your first time using SFTP, you must request a new SFTP login. For instructions and credentials, in the portal click the name of your app, and then select the Binary File(s) tab. On this tab, select the SFTP instructions and naming convention link, which will take you to instructions, file naming formats, and your SFTP server and credentials.

The Amazon Appstore does not enforce an upper limit on app submissions by using the FTP server. In practice, however, APK files larger than 100MB are problematic from both the ingestion and delivery perspectives. Amazon recommends that you deploy a smaller APK that downloads and installs quickly, and then upon first launch downloads additional resources and saves them on a local file system. Binary blobs (.obb) are not supported by the Amazon Appstore, so it is up to the developer to install external resources in the proper path after downloading them at runtime, and to submit an APK compiled without .obb files.

You can use the steps for setting up a new FTP login to retrieve an existing FTP login. On the Binary File(s) tab, in the Binary file* section, select the SFTP instructions and naming convention link to view the instructions.

Pay close attention to the names of the files that you upload via FTP. You must follow the naming conventions exactly in order for our system to recognize your files. For guidance on file names, on the SFTP instructions and naming convention page, click Learn more about SFTP asset naming convention.

Q: How do I add multiple binaries for device targeting to a new app?
For guidance on using multiple binaries for device targeting, see [Device Targeting][getting-started-with-device-targeting].
Q: How and why does Amazon add metadata to my app?
Amazon wraps your binary with code for the following purposes:
  • To collect analytics relating to the Apps
  • To evaluate and enforce our program policies
  • To share aggregated information with you and others regarding the program
  • To modify and add to your Mobile Apps so we can (at your option) enforce digital rights management (“DRM”)
  • To add metadata to your Mobile Apps so we can improve their compatibility with Amazon devices

In addition, Amazon overwrites your application signature and applies an Amazon signature, unique to you, for all your apps. This signature does not change, and we are happy to provide the following hashes for you on request:

  • SHA1:
  • SHA256:
  • Public Key exponent:
  • Public Key modulus:
  • Facebook hash:

To request these hashes, please use Contact Us.

To ensure that all your app’s functionality is retained when you submit your app, test the exact version you intend to submit with Live App Testing before submitting the app.

Q: Should I test my app as part of submission?
Yes. Amazon prepares your for distribution by wrapping it with code for DRM and analytics. You can use Live App Testing before submission to see how this additional code will impact the behavior of your app. This tool allows you to distribute your app to testers who can verify that your app works as it should after it is prepared for distribution in the Amazon Appstore. This way, you can ensure that your app is working as expected before going live. For more information, see [Testing Your App for the Amazon Appstore][testing-your-app].
Q: How do I submit an app that exceeds the Android 65,000 method limit?
If you submit an app that references more than 65,535 methods, you see the following error message:
Unable to execute dex: method ID not in [0, 0xffff]: 65536

Conversion to Dalvik format failed: Unable to execute dex: method ID not in [0, 0xffff]: 65536

This is because Android has a limit of 65,535 method references for Dalvik executable (dex) bytecode files. For more information on avoiding or dealing with this issue, see [Avoiding Compile Errors When Submitting Your App][appstore-avoid-compile-errors].

Submission: Content Guidelines

Q: How does the app approval process work?
We want customers to have a good experience with every app they acquire from Amazon. For this reason, we test the apps you submit prior to making them available to verify that each app works as outlined in your product description, does not impair the functionality of the mobile device or put customer data at risk once installed, and complies with the terms of the Amazon App Distribution and Services Agreement and our Content Guidelines. Our intent is not to be prescriptive in terms of what constitutes good app design. Amazon is a big believer in innovation, and we hope to feature many creative and innovative apps. See [Viewing App Submission Status][viewing-app-submission-status] to learn more.
Q: Do my apps need to comply with a content policy?
Yes. Each app that you submit to us must adhere to our Content Guidelines. For more information, see the [Amazon Appstore Content Policy Requirements][appstore-content-policy].

For specific examples of expected app functionality, see [Test Criteria for Amazon Appstore Apps][appstore-test-criteria].

Q: I have an eBook app that did not go live for Amazon devices, even though I selected the devices. Why isn’t my app live?
We believe that e-book content is better suited for publication on Amazon devices through the Kindle eBook store. Please submit the content to Kindle Direct Publishing.
Q: I want my app to be live for both Amazon and non-Amazon devices. Why is my app live only on non-Amazon devices, even though I have selected both for my app?
We consider a variety of factors in evaluating each app, including the customer experience on the device and compatibility with the device. Our goal is to offer a broad and compelling assortment of apps to Amazon customers, but not all apps available through the Amazon Appstore are available on Amazon devices.
Q: Why didn’t my launcher, widget or lockscreen app go live for Amazon devices?
We seek to preserve a consistent customer experience on Amazon devices. If your app overrides the native user experience, it will not be published on Amazon devices.
Q: Where is the best place to publish if I have an app for my book, bookshelf, or bookstore?
The place to publish your books is Kindle Direct Publishing. Kindle Direct Publishing allows you to reach millions of customers who already use Kindle devices and Kindle reading apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, and more.

You can also enroll your book in KDP Select, and help your customers discover your books by making them available through the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, and reach the growing number of Amazon Prime customers around the world.

Q: Will Amazon tell me when my app is approved?
Yes. You can track the approval status of your app at any time by signing in to the developer portal and finding your app in the Dashboard on the home page. We will also notify you by email when the status of your app changes.

You will receive an email when:

  • Your app has been accepted into the Amazon Mobile App Distribution program and will be made available on the date you specified in the portal.
  • We require more information to complete the testing process. (We might be missing a critical asset or have found that a critical asset does not meet Amazon’s specifications.) We will provide you with details on the information we require to resume testing.
  • Your app has failed our testing process. We will provide you with details on the failure and will also provide guidance on resubmission.
Q: What are the application status codes?
See [Viewing App Submission Status][viewing-app-submission-status] for a list of application status codes and their descriptions.
Q: Are there any specific restrictions that apply to keyboard apps?
Yes. Keyboard apps must function whether or not an end user’s device is connected to the Internet. Any tracking of user activity (including keystroke logging) through a keyboard app must be clearly disclosed to end users and may be used only to provide or improve the app’s keyboard functionality (and not, for example, for advertising purposes).

Submission: Device Targeting

Q: What is device targeting?
Device targeting allows you to target specific devices with different versions of your app so that you can tailor your APK for variable features such as screen size and density, OpenGL compression format, and Android API level.  You may individually target Amazon devices. All non-Amazon Android devices, including BlackBerry 10 devices, may be targeted by a single APK.

For more information see [Getting Started with Device Targeting][getting-started-with-device-targeting].

Q: How does device targeting help me?
  • Better search relevancy for your app. Instead of having multiple apps (such as an HD version and a SD version) for a single title, your app’s Customer Reviews, page views, and downloads are consolidated in a single app—pushing your app up in search and relevancy rankings.
  • Reduced customer confusion. Customers won’t be confused by multiple device-specific versions of your app.
  • Device-specific feature optimization. You can tailor your APK for screen size and density, OpenGL compression format, and API version.
  • Better customer experience. You can manually filter out Android devices that have known compatibility issues, ensuring their customers only get apps that work well on their devices.
  • Review app availability. You can review the list of supported, excluded and unsupported devices in the Dev Portal Binary File(s) tab to quickly see which devices are compatible with your  app, and if the app manifest settings have filtered out any devices.
Q: How do I format versionCode and versionName for an app using device targeting?
  • For each APK in the app instance, specify the android:versionName string that you want the user to see for the APK.
  • Specify a different android:versionCode integer for each APK in the app instance.
  • For an app update, increase android:versionCode as required by the Android platform.

For more information about versioning your apps, see Versioning your Applications in the Android documentation.

Submission: International Distribution

Q: I already offer apps on Amazon. How can I make my apps available in all countries?
You don’t have to do anything—Amazon sells your apps and their in-app purchasable (IAP) items internationally. They are submitted for sale in our international marketplaces when we launch Amazon Apps internationally. Amazon automatically converts the base list price of your apps and IAP items into a marketplace list price in the local currency.

Customers will see your apps and IAP items in English, and your apps and IAP items will be available automatically in all countries (and all future countries) where Amazon offers apps.

Q: What if I don’t want my app to be available in a specific country?
Sign in to the developer portal and select the My Apps tab. Once there, select the app and then select the Availability and Pricing tab. On this tab, clear the check box for any country in which you don’t want your app to be sold.
Q: How does international pricing work?
Amazon uses the base list price that you set for your app in the developer portal to calculate a list price in the currency of each marketplace.
Q: How do I change the list price of my app in an international marketplace?
Sign in to the developer portal and select the My Apps tab. Once there, select the app and then click the Availability and Pricing tab. Edit list prices for each marketplace by selecting the radio button for I’ll set my own list prices. Selecting the button exposes the option to change the list price for each marketplace.
Q: How does Amazon split the revenue from international sales?
Amazon pays developers 70% of the marketplace list price for all sales.
Q: Do I always get paid based on the marketplace list price?
List prices include any value-added tax (VAT) or similar taxes included in the purchase price, but the taxes are excluded from the list price for royalty calculation purposes. For example, if the list price for your app is 1.15 Euros, and the price we show buyers includes a 15% VAT, the list price for royalty calculation purposes is 1.00 Euro.
Q: The default language setting for apps is English. How do I change the product information language for my app for different countries?
To provide a localized description of your app and in-app purchasable (IAP) items, sign in to the developer portal and select the My Apps tab. Select an app, and then select the Description tab. On that tab, click Edit, and then click Save and Add a Translation. Languages you can add are English (U.K.), French, German, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, Portuguese (Brazil), and English (Australia). After adding a translation, click Save or Save and Add a Translation.

Submission: PC and Mac Software

Q: Can I use the developer portal to publish my PC and Mac digital software and video games?
Yes. By using the portal, you can submit PC and Mac digital software and video games, as well as mobile apps. To get started, go to https://developer.amazon.com/welcome to create a developer account. Use the self-service submission process to submit your titles to Amazon.
Q: How do I submit my PC and Mac digital software or video games?
When you sign in to your account on the developer portal, you will be guided through a step-by-step submission process. Learn more here.
Q: I have an account on the developer portal. Do I need to create a new account for submitting digital software or video games?
No. Use your existing account to submit PC and Mac digital software and video games.
Q: Can I upload my PC and Mac digital software and video games and have them appear as a pre-order on Amazon.com?
No. Amazon does not currently support pre-orders for these items. If you want to submit digital software or video game titles for pre-order, please contact your Vendor Manager or make a Contact Us request.
Q: How can I ensure that my Contact Us request is handled as quickly as possible?
When you fill out the Contact Us form, please include your Developer Name. If your issue is regarding a particular app submission, please include a link to the detail page. If your app has not yet been published, please include the name of the app. If you encounter an error message while submitting your app, please include the exact error message with your Contact Us submission. All of these steps will help us identify the issue affecting you and get back to you as quickly as possible.
Q: Can I use Security Profiles or GameCircle services?
No. At this time, these services don’t support PC and Mac digital software and video games.
Q: Does Amazon support in-game purchases in PC and Mac video games?
Not at this time.
Q: Does Amazon support direct-to-account or instant access PC and Mac video games?
Yes. To get started, log in to your Developer Portal, click “Apps & Services” in the top bar, then click “PC/Mac & Web Instant Access” and follow the integration instructions there.
Q: Can I distribute my PC and Mac digital software and video games outside of the U.S.?
Yes. You can specify in which countries you want to make your title available during setup. You can also edit this later if you want to add more countries to your existing titles.
Q: How do I submit the same digital software and video games for both PC and Mac platforms?
Because Amazon reviews each version of your digital software or video game separately, you must go through the submission process for each platform version.
Q: How do I upload product keys for PC and Mac digital software and video games?
After submitting your digital software and video games for approval, you can upload product keys in the developer portal by clicking My Apps and then Key Management.
Q: When I upload keys I have the option to name my key set. What should I call my key set?
The key set name you choose is presented to customers. To make redeeming a key as easy as possible for customers, it should match what your app asks for. “Product Key”, “Serial Number”, and “Activation Code” are common choices.
Q: What is an online code or online game code?
An online code or online game code is a product activation key that your customers receive after purchasing your product. The code is used to authorize the use of your software or game on a Mac or PC.
Q: May I submit a digital software or video game product that has a product code only and no binary?
Yes. On the Binary & Keys tab, select “No” for “Are you distributing binaries?” and “Yes” for “Are you distributing product keys?”
Q: What is the approval process for digital software and video games?
Amazon reviews your submitted digital software and video games before publishing them. Your account dashboard in the developer portal displays the status of your submissions. Amazon will notify you by email if it discovers any issues with a submission.
Q: What is an academic product?
Academic products are specially-priced offerings specifically for qualifying higher education students, faculty, and staff. Customers are required to provide proof of current academic status at the time of purchase, and Amazon verifies their status with a designated third-party service.
Q: Can I upload files in formats other than .exe? Or can I upload multiple versions of the same app (e.g. 32 bit and 64 bit)?
Yes. Save the files you want to upload in a separate folder on your computer. Include a readme file in that folder with installation or usage instructions for the customer. In the “Binary” step of the submission form, identify the folder as the “Binary” and identify the readme file as the “Installer executable file name”. This will allow our systems to accept your files, and point the customer to the instructions you’ve provided.
Q: The submission form specifies several parameters for image uploads. What happens if I don’t adhere to those?
Your image submissions will appear successful at first, then the submission will fail later in the process. Trying to upload images that don’t meet those requirements will delay your title’s setup.
Q: How do I find my product on the retail website? How do I find my product’s ASIN?
From the Apps and Services tab on the Developer Portal, hover over your title, and click on the cog that appears on the right side of the list. Choose “View on Amazon.com”. This will take you to your product’s detail page. On the detail page, your ASIN is listed under “Product Details”.
Q: How do I delete or hide an item form my dashboard?
We don’t support that functionality at this time.

Submission: Releasing New Versions

Q: How do I update my app?
Users with appropriate permissions can submit binary updates and bug fixes through the developer portal.

To update an app, in the portal, on the My Apps tab, click the name of the app to open the general information page for the current version of the app. Click Upcoming Version, and you will be guided through the update process.

Notes:

  • Apps cannot be updated while they are in the Amazon review process.
  • If you must change the media assets or other assets associated with your app, this content must be edited and saved by a person with the administrator or marketer role before the new version is submitted by a developer.

Submission: Support and Troubleshooting

Q: I have an app in Google Play. What should I do to ensure the app works on Amazon?
Make sure that your app does not include any copy protection functionality (you have the option to apply Amazon’s DRM technology—see the FAQ section titled “Submitting Apps: Binary Info”. You should also take a moment to understand the different signing options available to you (developer signed or Amazon signed) and choose the option that works best for your users.
Q: Do you have any pre-release testing?
Amazon tests your apps before publishing them, but this testing does not replace pre-release testing. You should complete your own pre-release testing before submitting your app or game to Amazon. Once your app is submitted, you must wait for it to be approved by Amazon before you can test the final approved version. See [Testing Your App for the Amazon Appstore][testing-your-app]
Q: There is a review of my app that I feel is inappropriate. How can I resolve this?
Click the Report abuse link below the review. The information you submit will be reviewed by Amazon, and we will take appropriate action.
Q: How do I terminate my App Distribution and Services Agreement?
Our goal is to establish long-term relationships with developers, and we encourage you to contact us before terminating your distribution agreement to see if we can improve your Amazon Mobile App Distribution Program experience.

If you would like to terminate your distribution agreement, please send an email with your developer name, contact information, and a list of your apps to apps-notices@amazon.com with a carbon-copy (CC:) to contracts-legal@amazon.com. It can take up to 10 days from our receipt of your email for your account to be officially terminated.

All requests to terminate an App Distribution and Services Agreement are final, and all sales of your applications on Amazon will be suspended. You will have limited access to the developer portal after your distribution agreement has been terminated.

Q: How do I contact Amazon if I have questions about my account?
Please use the Contact Us form.

Submission: Web Apps

Q: How do I get started with web apps?
Amazon now accepts HTML5 apps and mobile websites to help expand the reach of your web apps to customers in nearly 200 countries worldwide on Fire and Android devices. By submitting your web app to the program, you can grow your business and make money.
Q: How do I test my web app?
With the Amazon Web App Tester, you experience your app or site in a production-like environment without first submitting it to our store. The Web App Tester also offers a suite of tools to help you debug your web apps to ensure they’ll look and work great on Fire tablets, Fire phone, and Android devices. The tester is available in the Amazon Appstore for your Fire tablets, Fire phone, or Android device.
Q: How do I install the Amazon Web App Tester?
Get installation instructions here.
Q: How do I submit a web app?
The developer portal will guide you through the submission process. Get instructions here.
Q: Can I make money with web apps on Amazon?
Yes. You can earn revenue by either setting a base list price for your web app in the ‘Availability & Pricing’ tab during the submission flow or by selling digital content and subscriptions—such as in-game currency, expansion packs, upgrades, magazine issues, and more— using the Amazon In-App Purchasing API for JavaScript. The In-App Purchasing API is available as part of the Amazon Web App Development Resources. It is provided as a ZIP file that contains the JavaScript files that are required for your application to access the necessary Amazon services.
Q: How can I make my web app look good on all devices?
Visit our web app best practices page for detailed information on making sure your web app looks and works great.
Q: What is the Web App Runtime?
Amazon’s web app runtime is GPU-accelerated and optimized for fluid performance on Amazon devices. Built on the open-source Chromium project, the runtime supports the latest HTML5 features and includes standards-based extensions that give you access to offline storage and to location sensors. With the web app runtime, your web apps can achieve fluidity and performance comparable to that of native apps. Read more about Web App Runtime Feature Support.

Payments, Taxes, and Sales Reports

Q: I have listed a monetized app in the Amazon Appstore. How do I get paid for my Amazon sales?
See Understanding Amazon Appstore Payments to learn more about getting paid for your published apps in the Amazon Appstore.
Q: I plan to monetize the apps that I submit to the Amazon Appstore. Will I be taxed on my royalties from these apps? How do I set up my taxes for this?
Yes, if you are a US-based developer, your royalties will be subject to US taxes. You will submit your tax information to Amazon via a Tax Identity Interview. See Setting Up Taxes for Your App for more information.
Q: I am a non-US-based developer. Will I still have to pay US taxes?
Depending on your country of residence and where you sell your apps, you may be required to pay US taxes. See Setting Up Taxes for Your App for more information.
Q: What is the Tax Identification Interview?
In order to comply with United States Internal Revenue tax regulations, the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal requires you to complete a tax identity interview for apps that are intended to generate royalties or other payments to you from Amazon. See Setting Up Taxes for Your App for more information.
Q: Where can I find reports for my app?
Find the various reports for your app by clicking the Reporting tab of the developer portal and then selecting a report type from the Reporting tab. See Viewing Reports for Your App.

Promoting Your App

Q: How do I market my app or game at Amazon?
Listing your app at Amazon exposes it to tens of millions of Amazon customers who can spread the word about your brands and products. Amazon’s automated and targeted marketing provides a unique and personalized experience for every Amazon customer. Algorithms use historical customer behavior to recommend products to each customer. Optimizing the marketing content that you provide to Amazon with your app submission will maximize your exposure. Learn more about optimizing the marketing content for your app, including writing effective app descriptions, incorporating video and screen shots, and submitting promotional images for the Billboards feature on our developer blog.
Q: How do I ask for featured marketing placement?
Submit your app to our marketing team. We highlight apps through our storefronts on mobile devices, Fire tablets, and Amazon.com, and through marketing vehicles such as email, Facebook, and Twitter. Examples of featured placements include “Highly Rated Apps and Games” and “Featured New Releases.” Your app will be considered for these placements. Your app may also be considered for seasonal placements, such as summer travel, back to school, or holiday apps.

Please share details about your app with us by completing the marketing request form.

Q: How do I link to/from my app for marketing purposes?
Amazon-approved marketing assets and brand, trademark, and marketing guidelines are here: Trademarks and Badges.
Q: What are the requirements for promotional images?
Promotional images should be 1024 x 500 px and in PNG or JPG format. We recommend that you make your image colorful to catch the eye of customers, and choose images that promote the essence of your app and brand. Text on your promotional image should be large, simple, and readable. Do not add the price to the image or any discount call outs, and do not submit screenshots as promotional art.

Promotion: Amazon Coins

Q: What is Amazon Coins?
Amazon Coins is a virtual currency that customers can use to purchase apps, games, and in-app items on Amazon devices, the Amazon Appstore for Android and the Amazon website.
Q: If a customer uses Amazon Coins to purchase my app, does that change how I am paid?
No. Developers receive the same royalty payments regardless of the payment method the customer chooses. One Amazon Coin on the US. com marketplace is worth $0.01. On the Germany, France, Italy, Spain marketplaces one Amazon Coin is worth €0,01 and on the UK marketplace, one Amazon Coin is worth £0,01. On the Japan marketplace, one Amazon Coin is worth [ ] and on the Australia marketplace, one Amazon Coin is worth A$0.01.  

So, for example, if an app on the UK marketplace costs £2.99, it costs 299 Amazon Coins. Similarly, if an app on the US marketplace costs $2.99, it costs 299 Amazon Coins. When a user purchases an app by using Amazon Coins, we will pay the developer royalty in the currency of the customer’s country.

Q: In what countries can customers use Amazon Coins?
Amazon Coins may be used by customers to purchase apps available for sale on the US, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, and Australia marketplaces. One Amazon Coin on the US. com marketplace is worth $0.01. On the Germany, France, Italy, Spain marketplaces one Amazon Coin is worth €0,01 and on the UK marketplace, one Amazon Coin is worth £0,01. On the Japan marketplace, one Amazon Coin is worth ¥1 and on the Australia marketplace, one Amazon Coin is worth A$0.01.
Q: Which apps and games can be purchased with Amazon Coins?
Customers can spend their Amazon Coins on apps and games sold on Amazon devices, the Amazon Appstore for Android and the Amazon website.
Q: How do I make my digital items available to be purchased with Amazon Coins?
If your app or game is available for sale on at least one member of the current Fire family, no additional work is required on your part to make your digital items purchasable with Amazon Coins.
Q: How do I enable customers to use Amazon Coins for in-app purchases?
Amazon Coins are simply another payment method honored by the in-app purchase flow. No additional work is required from developers who use the latest Amazon Apps & Games Services SDK.
Q: Can customers use their Amazon Coins to buy in-game currencies?
Yes. Customers can purchase in-game currencies with Amazon Coins.
Q: Can subscriptions be purchased with Amazon Coins?
No. Customers cannot purchase subscriptions with Amazon Coins.

Security

Q: What do I do if my Android app is not validating SSL certificates as described in http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/582497?
First, verify that the SSL traffic is coming from one of the following libraries:
  • Flurry CVE-2014-6024
  • Chartboost CVE-2014-6025
  • AdColony CVE-2014-5524
  • MoMinis/Playscape CVE-2014-5525
  • TapJoy CVE-2014-5527
  • InMobi CVE-2014-5526
  • Appsflyer CVE-2014-5528
  • Zopim CVE-2014-5530
  • Fiksu CVE-2014-5814

After verifying that the SSL traffic is coming from one of the above libraries, refer to the CVE information for the versions of the library that are affected, and then if available, upgrade to a fixed version of the library. If all of your unverified SSL traffic is in one of the above libraries, upgrade the library and resubmit your app to Amazon.

Otherwise, if all of your unverified SSL traffic is not contained within one of the above libraries, to secure your own traffic, take precautions to protect the data of your customers. If you use a purchased SSL certificate to do this, wrap all of your code that is dependent on SSL in a try/catch block to prevent your app from sending or receiving data on the network in the event of an SSLException.

If you sign SSL traffic yourself, store your CA Authority certificate in your app’s assets directory, and then use the CA Authority certificate to validate your SSL traffic within a try/catch block, and don’t allow traffic if the certificate is not trusted. For information about secure Android application design and coding, including examples on how to validate self-signed SSL traffic, see section 5.4 in http://www.jssec.org/dl/android_securecoding_en.pdf.

If you have any known CA Authority certificates that you are using for your own traffic, to prevent an attack based on compromised CA Authority hosts, pin your SSL certificates that are based on those CA Authorities.

For more information about this vulnerability, see http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/582497 and https://www.securecoding.cert.org/confluence/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=134807561.

For documentation about correctly validating SSL traffic, see http://developer.android.com/training/articles/security-ssl.html.

For more information on how to pin SSL certificates in your apps and other platform’s applications, see https://www.owasp.org/index.php/Certificate_and_Public_Key_Pinning.

Policy: General

Q: What agreements and policies must I comply with in order to participate in the Program?
In order to distribute apps through our Program, you are required to agree to and comply with the App Distribution and Services Agreement. All content you make available through our Program must also comply with all applicable laws.

If you use any of the APIs, resources, tools or other materials we make available for developers on our portal, your use of those materials is governed by the Program Materials License Agreement. In addition, the use of certain APIs are subject to additional terms, as detailed in the relevant schedules of the App Distribution and Services Agreement. Your use of the developer portal itself is governed by the Amazon App Distribution and Services Portal Terms of Use.

We’ve made available certain Amazon trademarks and logos for your use to promote the availability of your app in our Program. Your use of those trademarks and logos must comply with our Trademark, Brand and Marketing Guidelines.

Finally, please carefully review these Policy Guidelines and ensure that the content you make available in our Program complies with these guidelines. You should also review all of our FAQs and the documentation for all APIs, resources, tools and other materials you use to understand additional requirements that may apply to you.

Q: Am I responsible for import and export compliance?
Yes. Many countries around the world, including the United States, the EU, and other countries in which Amazon has marketplaces, regulate the export and import of products, including the export of software that includes encryption. Depending on your location and your app, the submission of an app to Amazon may be an export from your home country, and the access or download of apps from Amazon by international customers may be an export subject to applicable export control laws. You are responsible for ensuring that your app complies with all applicable trade control laws and for all obligations under those laws, such as export classification, registration, reporting, and licensing. In particular, if your app makes use of encryption technology, you may be required to obtain an encryption registration before distributing your app through our Program. For more information about US import and export regulations, please refer to the US Bureau of Industry and Security’s website.

Policy: Content Guidelines

Q: Do my apps need to comply with a content policy?
Yes. Each app that you submit to us must adhere to the following content guidelines. If we determine that an app contains, facilitates, or promotes content that is prohibited by these guidelines, we will reject the app submission or suspend further distribution of your app and notify you by using the email address associated with your developer account. See [Amazon Appstore Content Policy Requirements][appstore-content-policy].

For specific examples of expected app functionality, see our [Test Criteria for Amazon Appstore Apps][appstore-test-criteria].

Q: Are there separate ratings criteria for apps published in the Brazil marketplace?
Yes. The Brazilian Ministry of Justice requires Amazon to display badging and ratings according to local laws for all apps published in the Brazilian store. Amazon assigns the rating for the Brazilian marketplace, where applicable, based on the information you provide to us during the regular app submission process.

Policy: Intellectual Property

Q: What restrictions apply to my distribution of apps that contain a third party’s intellectual property?
Amazon cannot distribute apps that infringe the intellectual property rights (including copyright, trademark and publicity rights) of a third party. In general, this means that you should either have obtained a license or otherwise received permission from any third party whose intellectual property you wish to use in your app. You are ultimately responsible for ensuring that you hold all necessary intellectual property rights to distribute an app through Amazon. If you are unsure if you own all rights to the app, please consult an attorney.
Q: Does including a disclaimer in my app mean that I can use a third party’s intellectual property without worrying about infringement?
No. Many developers believe that they may use copyrighted or trademarked content, or content that incorporates the name, image or likeness of a celebrity, without infringing upon the third party’s intellectual property rights as long as they include a disclaimer stating that such use is unofficial or that they are not affiliated with the intellectual property owner. This is not the case – any unauthorized use of a third party’s intellectual property, regardless of any disclosure or disclaimer, can constitute intellectual property infringement.
Q: What should I do if another developer is using my intellectual property without my authorization?
If you believe that an app on the Amazon Appstore contains content that is infringing your intellectual property, you can report it to Amazon using our online form.

Policy: Personal Information and COPPA

Q: My app collects personal information from end users. What requirements apply to the distribution of my app through the Program?
As detailed in our App Distribution and Services Agreement, if you (or any third-party plug-in or service provider you use) collects personal information from end users, you must provide notice of that data collection to end users, obtain their consent to that collection, only use the information in a way that end users have consented to, and ensure that your collection and use of that information complies with your privacy notice and all applicable laws (including, if applicable, COPPA, as detailed below). Prior to submitting an app that collects personal information from end users, you are required to supply a privacy policy that will be displayed to end users on your app’s product detail page.
Q: What is COPPA?
“COPPA” is the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, a United States federal law that is designed to give parents control over the information collected from their young children online. COPPA prohibits the collection, use, or disclosure of personal information from children under 13 unless you have provided notice and received their parent’s consent. Parental consent must be verifiable (e.g., having the parent fill out a consent form, or checking the parent’s government-issued ID). More Information about how to comply with COPPA, and the consequences for failing to do so, can be found here.
Q: Why should I declare whether my app is directed at children under 13?
Apps that are directed at children under 13 are not eligible to participate in the Amazon Mobile Ad Network or in the Amazon Mobile Associates program. This is because of restrictions on advertising found in COPPA and in related regulations relating to online advertising. You are responsible for complying with the restrictions to allow advertisement to be served on a child directed app and, when applicable to your app, with COPPA. COPPA is enforced by the FTC and the penalties for violating COPPA can be as high as $16,000 per violation.
Q: How do I know whether I should declare my app is directed at kids under 13?
An app may be considered child-directed based on a variety of factors:
  • subject matter of the app (e.g., educational)
  • visual content (e.g., unicorns)
  • use of animated characters
  • presence of child-oriented activities and incentives
  • type of music or other audio content (e.g., songs sung by children, not just songs that kids like)
  • age of models (e.g., babies, toddlers, tweens)
  • presence of child celebrities or celebrities who appeal to children
  • complexity of language used on the app
  • whether advertising on the app is directed to children

If you are unsure about whether your app is child-directed, please consult an attorney.

Q: My app is directed at kids under 13. If I obtain parental consent, can I participate in the Amazon Mobile Ad Network and the Amazon Mobile Associates program?
No. Apps that are directed at kids under 13 are not eligible to join our Mobile Ad Network or Mobile Associates program.
Q: My app is directed at a mixed audience (over and under 13). Can I show your ads, or offer products for sale through Mobile Associates, in my app?
You may not show ads from our Mobile Ad Network, or make available products for sale through Mobile Associates, to users you know are under 13, even in an app that is not child-directed. For example, if you ask a user for their age and they indicate they are under 13, you may not show an ad to them that you source from the Amazon Mobile Ad Network.

Policy: In-App Purchasing

Q: Do I have to use the Amazon In-App Purchasing API for digital purchases within my app?
To make the app available on Amazon devices, the app must use the Amazon In-App Purchasing API for all eligible purchases. To learn more about the Amazon In-App Purchasing API, see In-App Purchasing.
Q: What can be sold by using the In-App Purchasing API, and what is prohibited?
You can enable customers to buy digital products, content, or services—such as additional or enhanced functionality, in-app tools, data, or media content—intended to be accessed or used within an app.

You may not allow customers to purchase any other item, including:

  • Any goods or services that are to be used outside of the app itself (other than digital content accessible both inside and outside your app)
  • Any currency, credits, points, or other items or units that can be transferred from an end user to others and/or circulated as a medium of exchange
  • A prepaid account that creates cash balances that end users can use to purchase additional in-app products
  • Any gift cards
  • Any lottery tickets
  • Any event tickets, such as sporting event tickets or concert tickets
  • Any illegal and potentially illegal products
  • Any government documents, identification, birth certificates, passports, and licenses
  • Any unauthorized and unlicensed products
  • Any content that violates the [Amazon Appstore Content Policy Requirements][appstore-content-policy]
  • Any items that infringe upon an end user’s privacy
  • Any insurance product
  • Any listings for warranties and other similar offerings
  • Any product or service that is regulated by a government entity
Q: Are there any additional requirements that apply to my use of in-app purchasing?
Yes. In addition to complying with our program policies on the types of in-app items you can offer, you must ensure that in-app purchasing in your app complies with all applicable laws. Some of these laws limit how you can promote your in-app items. For instance, consumer protection laws in the European Union prohibit direct exhortations to children to buy items. They may also restrict how the purchase of in-app items can impact the functionality of your app. Two references that can help you understand how EU consumer protection laws apply to in-app purchasing are the EU Consumer Protection Cooperation (CPC) Network’s position and the UK Competition and Markets Authority’s Principles for online and app-based games.

Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Q: What is AWS?
Amazon Web Services (AWS) delivers a set of simple building block services that together form a reliable, scalable, and inexpensive computing platform in the cloud. Mobile developers can access these compute and store resources through simple API calls and with the use of the AWS Mobile SDK (and other operating systems). The SDK is a development tool that makes it easier for developers to access AWS resources directly from their development environment. You can use AWS without the SDK, but if you’re new to AWS/mobile development, the SDK lowers the barrier to entry. Learn more about hosting on AWS.

To get started, visit the AWS Mobile Developer Center for libraries and code samples.

Q: What is the AWS SDK?
The AWS SDK provides a library, code samples, and documentation for developers to build connected mobile applications using Amazon Web Services.