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Official Android Market Updates: New Countries & Manifest

android-market-official-updateI’ve just got an Official Email from the Android Market Support Team that outlines a few major updates: (1) Ability for developers to target new countries for Free Apps, (2) Local language support in more countries, and (3) Required identification of minimum SDK version supported for new/updated apps. I’ve tried to organize the information quickly/effectively but also included the full Email below for your convenience.

Free Apps can now be targeted to these additional Countries (only new):

  • Canada
  • France
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • Switzerland

Paid Apps will soon be added to (only new):

  • Austria
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Spain

Local Language Support Now Includes (all):

  • English
  • German
  • French
  • Italian
  • Spanish
  • Dutch
  • Czech
  • Polish

Manifest
Developers will now be required to indicate the oldest supported SDK to ensure the best possible compatibility with handsets, since different versions (currently 1.1 and 1.5) will be in the wild. Some applications based on 1.5 simply won’t work or function properly on 1.1 handsets – this not only addresses that issue now but for Android’s future since there are bound to be lots of different versions on lots of different phones in lots of different countries. See the links in below Email for more info.

And the full Email:

Hello,

I’m writing to let you know about several changes made to Android Market.

We have added checkboxes in the publisher website at
http://market.android.com/publish to target free apps for the following
countries:  France, Italy, Spain, Canada, Portugal, Switzerland, and
Ireland.  Please note that among the countries in this list, devices are
currently available in France, Italy, and Spain, and devices will soon be
available in the other markets.  You can target one or more countries by
selecting the individual checkboxes or by choosing “All Current and Future
Locations,” which will make your free apps appear to users in all
countries where free apps are available.

In the next couple weeks, we will add buyer support for priced apps in the
following countries:  France, Italy, Spain, and Netherlands.  Also, we are
finalizing the work to enable developers in Germany, Austria, Netherlands,
France, and Spain to offer priced applications in the coming weeks.

To help you better merchandise your apps to users in different markets, we
continue to add local language support for app titles and descriptions.
The complete set of languages that Android Market now supports is:
English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Czech, and Polish.

Finally, to better support Android-powered devices that may be running
different versions of the platform, it is now necessary for all
applications published in Android Market to indicate a minimum SDK version
in the manifest file.  This applies to all new apps and upgrades to
existing apps; apps currently in Market do not need to indicate a minimum
SDK version until you publish an upgraded version.  If you were to use an
Android 1.5 API in your app, you would need to set minSdkVersion
accordingly (i.e., equal to ’3′) so that Android Market won’t show your
app to devices running an older version of the platform.  Apps using 1.5
APIs will not run properly on phones running earlier versions of Android.
See the following page for more detailed instructions on how to specify a
minimum SDK version in your manifest:
http://developer.android.com/guide/publishing/versioning.html#minsdkversion.

One note:  Android 1.5 is becoming available to devices, but in the near
term some users will still be on devices running Android 1.1 due to the
deployment schedule for new phones and update process for existing phones.
Therefore, we recommend that you first focus on making sure your 1.1 app
works properly on 1.5 devices (future proofing) before publishing a 1.5
version.  We will provide more information when the majority of users have
migrated their devices to Android 1.5 to help you with your app upgrade
plans.  For more information on how to future proof your app, see the
following blogpost:
http://android-developers.blogspot.com/2009/04/future-proofing-your-apps.html.

Thanks, and we look forward to continue working with you on Android
Market.

Eric Chu,
Android Market

It is exciting to see the Google Android Team continue to address the needs of both consumers and developers on a global scale. They’ve got quite the task in front of them and they’re attacking it slowly but surely… not to mention effectively. Although I must admit, I was sad to see that Pig Latin and Ebonics are not among the new supported languages. Maybe next time.




  • http://twitter.com/rickyrescue Ricky

    Oh that’s good, I hope the PicSay developers are in one of those places. They haven’t been able to release the paid version for so long. :O

  • Peter

    The Picsay developer is Dutch, so yeah.

  • Jakob

    Hi!

    Paid Apps are already available in Germany! :)

    Greetings,
    Jakob

  • esbium

    This is great and all but until they get Screenshots of the apps, developers will continue to struggle to make any substantial money on the Android Market!

  • twilightwolf90

    We need to start broadening our horizons. The Earth can’t hold all of us anyway, so we should localize Android in Klingon next XD

  • Gram

    HEY HEY HEY!!

    I saw “Canada” in there… and since Android is not in Canada yet does this mean that the magic/other-android-phone will be headed to Canada?

    I HOPE SO!

  • Maj

    what about the people in the rest of the world !!! this is plain stupid, they have to make it open for everyone

  • Andrew G

    why not Australia,we even speak bloody English down here, how hard can it be!

  • Seth

    Can any one from Android Market give us a damn date for paid apps in Australia?

  • jim jones

    As an andriod user were kinda hated for some reason why is that it I’m sayin jelousy how bout u guys

  • nother_anon_coward

    c’mon, whats wrong with Australia?
    couple of times news blog’s have had us as “released paid apps” – but it always seems to be Austria.
    no update to 1.5
    no paid apps
    please please please please please
    kick whoever is holding “it” up and get it done

  • Brian

    I have a similar complaint from South Africa. Still no access to the store in spite of us having access to both the G1 and G2.
    In my opinion this just totaly erodes the potential of android when compared to Iphone.
    even in South Africa where we don’t have an Itunes music store the folk releasing the Iphone made sure that the Iphone App Store was fully operational in South Africa before the device launch.

    So much for an Open Source phone, when there is no way to load free applications. It was a good thing I exchanged the G1 for a G2 as this at least has Activesync, otherwise I would not have been able to download a tool.

    Time to start a petition

  • M V

    Just picked up an HTC Dream phone in Canada. No paid apps available here yet. Any date for when Canada gets access to the paid apps?

  • http://www.myitjunction.com/ ashish

    whenever something new comes excitement gets increased. When apps are gonna release in australia

  • http://www.openbiz.com.au Pablo

    As many others left their willingness to publish paid apps from Australia, I would like to leave mine as well.
    Huge expactative to publish my developed paid apps!
    Cheers!

  • http://www.komfisoft.co.za Sammy

    I am a developer from South Africa and I hope to be able to publish my apps on the market. Is it possible in the near future or must I just stick to another plartform?

  • Oleg

    Any updates on this? The post is quite old. Any plans to include Scandinavian countries soon?

  • Jonas

    Why is it that only some countries are important enough for these people?
    How hard can it be to let everyone use the market and buy apps? I’m seriously considering to buy an Iphone so I won’t have to put up with this.

  • Sylvester

    I am from Belgium and do not have paid apps on the android market either. What is the problem really? If you can pay by VISA, it should work from any country, should it not? What is holding the market back from being globally and completely available? Can someone answer this please?

    Thanks in advance!

  • Vili101

    I bought an Android phone on the strength of Google’s reputation only to discover that neither is the Android Market accessible here nor is there any language support for Arabic/Farsi.
    I thought the United States was meant to be allowing Iranians to have access to communications technology (Google Talk etc) as part of it’s policy towards the country. Has Android not yet got the message? You guys are losing out to your competitors here – and it’s a big market. Hurry up Android and give us access to Apps and full Farsi language support.

  • Vamsidhar

    When will India be included in the Market. India has many potential developers to contribute.