Microsoft is playing catch up in the app marketplace and development world, so they’ve got to make submitting apps for Windows Phone 7 a breeze. After negative feedback surrounding the annual $99 developer fee covering only 5 apps, Microsoft has revised their policies.
The updated guidelines state that an annual $99/year fee will still be required but developers can now upload unlimited paid apps and up to 5 free apps each year. Additional free app uploads will cost $19.99.
I think this is a completely fair compromise. It allows developers an affordable way to get their product to market but prevents spammers and scammers from automating apps/games and uploading them in mass quantities, polluting the app marketplace a la Android.
Here are specifics of the new policies:
- Annual registration fee of $99
- No limit to the number of paid apps submitted 5 free apps per registration, $19.99 each after that
- Free registration to DreamSpark students (same unlimited paid and 5 free apps applies)
- A new optional push notification service to help developers stay engaged with customers
- A new optional Trial API – trials mean more customers try your app, and less likelihood that they return it. The length or type of trial is fully controlled by the developer
- The ability to publish to all available Marketplace markets through a new “worldwide distribution” option, allowing developers to pay once and distribute broadly
- Wider range of business models; free, paid, freemium and ad-funded
- Equally important to many developers is what isn’t changing:
- A revenue share of 70/30
- Developers manage their business with Marketplace via the self service portalhttp://developer.windowsphone.com
- Payout takes place monthly for developers that have earned more than USD$200 worldwide
- Developers can make ad funded applications
- All applications go through a process of technical and content certification
- Marketplace offers support for credit card commerce, and where available mobile operator billing.
- Microsoft continues its practice of publishing policies, guidelines, and submission process details to developers so they understand exactly how marketplace works.
For the complete policies, read here.
[Via Windows Blog]