Google Play has always been the most loved app store for all the Android application developers, simply because it is Google’s official Android app store. But sadly, over the years it has become saturated with apps and way too overcrowded – which implies distinguishing and fishing for apps which are ranked mediocre as compared to the millions of other apps at the store is a difficult task! So the next step for Android app developers is to head towards the third-party app stores in order to market their apps.
Before we proceed to shortlist the trending third-party app stores, let’s try to understand what exactly third party app stores are. It’s an app marketplace which is not owned by the owner of the OS, or in other words Google Play has zero control over these stores. Developers and users are free to download and access games and apps from these stores minus any restrictions.
Google Play is restricted in China which makes it a big market for third party app stores! Also, another reason as to why Android developers choose these stores is mainly due to the restrictions as compared to the other official app marketplaces. Users are allowed to download Android Application Package (apk) files directly on their Android devices, which can easily be installed and transferred to another device minus any issues. This system doesn’t work on Google Play.
Another reason why third party app stores are chosen by developers is because it helps them reach out to new audiences who won’t be found on Google Play. Also, most of the third party app stores offer interesting deals to mobile app developers as compared to the conventional 70:30 breakup by Google Play.
In spite of running the risk of getting malware on their devices and with certain apps requiring Google Play services to execute their key functions developers and mobile app users’ are still big fans of third party app stores. In case you are interested in submitting your application to a third party app store, here’s a roundup of the entire popular alternative app stores apart from Google Play:
1. Amazon App Store:
All the apps available on the Amazon App Store are more or less similar to what you would find on Google Play. Most of the popular games like Temple Run, Angry Birds and song detection app Shazam can easily be found on the Amazon App store. But the main difference which sets this store apart from the Google Play store is that it offers users an option to try the app before they can make a purchase. Also, it offers reviews, ratings and screenshots of apps which provides a preview.
This is one of the oldest Android application stores and this has been into existence much before Google Play was released. If you take a look at your Android device which does not support Google Play, you will find SlideME installed. It charges a 20% rate on applications, which also provide a wide range of payment options. Here’s an interesting fact: many Android app developers prefer SlideME in lieu of Google Play – so if you’re about to launch an app, you stand a good chance of earning more downloads on SlideME as compared to Google Play!
3. Samsung Galaxy Apps:
Earlier known as Samsung apps, it comes preloaded and installed on all Samsung smartphones and tablets. Unlike Google Play, it offers Samsung apps and third party apps too which can be downloaded by users and provides Google Play very strong competition. Also do note that this store has an active platform for selling other Samsung devices.
Apart from the above, the other third party app stores which any top Android app company and other developers would flock to include, Get Jar app store, AndSpot app store, ApkMirror and Mobile9. If you are an aspiring Android application developer or a leading mobile app development company, do try launching an app on one or two stores to check if it is really worth it. Third party app stores might not turn your app into a hit, but they will allow you to reach out to new audiences and also test new promotion and marketing strategies. Good luck!