Amazon is getting serious about competing with Google’s Android Marketplace, as shown by their recent contract with PopCap Games, who has agreed to exclusively distribute two of their popular game titles for a two-week period on the Amazon Appstore. Android app developers may need to start looking at Amazon’s Android app store as another viable venue for their products. Google’s Android Marketplace still bears the scars of serious criticisms over the past few years. There’s no doubt that Amazon sees an opening to use that bad rap against Google in an attempt to provide a better venue for app sales.
Users will be able to download the game for free the first 24 hours it's available, as part of Amazon's App of the Day promotion, another competitive weapon in Amazon’s arsenal. It will be priced at $2.99 after the first day.
Chuzzle is the first title, and is available today. PopCap's biggest seller, Plants Vs. Zombies, will follow later this month. This is the second exclusive release in the short two-month history of the Amazon Appstore. The first exclusive app release when Amazon opened its doors in March was Angry Birds Rio.
PopCap has over 1.5 billion game downloads worldwide, which makes them a lucrative partner for Amazon as they try to entice more customers away from the Android Marketplace. This should increase the visibility of Amazon’s Appstore and give them a short term advantage, but how much of a splash will it make? The titles will be available in other storefronts after the two-week agreement. However, many Android users who have been anticipating these high-profile games will not want to wait for two weeks if they know they can get the game right away on Amazon’s turf.
I personally remember when Intel seduced me into downloading their App Up store on my PC simply because they were offering Angry Birds for free to the first handful of downloaders. So I'm living proof promotions like these can work.
All eyes will surely be on Amazon for the remainder of the year, as they are supposedly working on an "entire family" of Android devices that may launch this coming holiday.
What's the next move for Google? How will Android Marketplace respond? And how will Amazon's entry into the tablet market affect the rest of the market?
Published at DZone with permission of its author, Jim Moscater.
(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)