Amazon says it is now accepting HTML5 web apps for its app store
HTML5 web apps can now be discovered, downloaded, installed and used in the Amazon Appstore providing better opportunities for developers to make money
Web developers and content publishers have historically faced numerous challenges when building, optimizing and distributing web apps for mobile devices. Previously, third party software was needed to convert mobile web content to native apps to participate in an appstore, and on-device debugging was a challenging and necessary prerequisite for achieving strong performance on a large variety of web runtimes. Amazon is removing these roadblocks by providing the following benefits:
- Easy distribution through the Amazon Appstore: Developers submit URLs and metadata for their HTML5 web apps and mobile websites directly to the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal. Amazon distributes the mobile web content through the Amazon Appstore to millions of Amazon customers using Kindle Fire and Android devices in nearly 200 countries.
- Strong web app performance on Kindle Fire: Developers benefit from native-like experiences on Kindle Fire with a new, faster web runtime, based on the open-source Chromium project. The runtime supports the latest HTML5 features and includes standards-based extensions enabling developers to build a web app once and deploy it across multiple platforms without requiring platform specific changes. In addition, the new runtime includes web developer tools enabling on-device debugging on Kindle Fire.
“We’ve heard from developers that making their web apps available for mobile devices is hard because many times it means rewriting their app, which takes extra time and often requires third party tools,” said Mike George, Vice President of Amazon Appstore, Games and Cloud Drive. “By launching support for HTML5 web apps in the Mobile App Distribution Program, we’re giving web developers the tools they need and all the benefits that native apps already enjoy in the Amazon Appstore and on Kindle Fire. This opens up new possibilities—starting with faster discovery, access to tools for increased monetization, and the ability to reach new customers for greater exposure.”
Spil Games is a games publisher of online and social games. “Amazon’s new web app initiative has opened up a brand new avenue for us to reach customers through the Amazon Appstore,” said Erik Goossens, CEO of Spil Games. “With the addition of web apps to the Mobile App Distribution Program, we are able to offer our games to millions of customers worldwide using the same discovery and launch experience that native Android apps enjoy.”
Scirra is a popular HTML5 game framework. “We believe HTML5 is the software platform of the future,” said Ashley Gullen, Founder of Scirra. “We’re really excited that Amazon supports HTML5 and has taken the innovative and valuable step of using state-of-the-art browser technology to allow development of web apps that are listed alongside traditional “native” apps. It also opens the door to sophisticated HTML5-powered engines like Construct 2, and we’re proud to be launching immediate support today.”
IGN Entertainment is a leading provider of game reviews, news and videos. “Our goal is to make IGN available on all screens where people play or read about games, so we’re delighted to be launching an app on Kindle Fire,” said Todd Northcutt, VP of Product at IGN Entertainment. “Amazon’s innovative approach made it an easy decision to bring IGN to the Amazon Appstore with minimal time and development effort on our part. We’re very excited to stand beside Amazon as they make the mobile app ecosystem more accessible to millions of content publishers worldwide.”
Today’s launch of web app support in the Amazon Appstore is the latest offering in an array of services that make Amazon the most complete end-to-end ecosystem for developers building, monetizing and marketing their apps and games. These capabilities include:
- The ability for app developers to use Amazon Web Services’ (AWS) technology platform for their infrastructure needs. Building blocks such as Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), and Amazon DynamoDB allow developers to focus on what differentiates their app rather than the undifferentiated heavy lifting of infrastructure.
- GameCircle, which includes capabilities like Achievements, Leaderboards, Friends and Whispersync for syncing games across devices, and leads to better engagement with games.
- Login with Amazon, which allows developers to easily reduce sign-in friction for their customers, leading to higher engagement and order conversion.
- In-App Purchasing on Kindle Fire, Mac, PC and web-based games. This enables developers to offer virtual items in their apps and games while allowing their end users to simply use their Amazon accounts to make the purchase.
- A/B Testing, which helps developers improve app functionality with the ability to simultaneously test two different in-app experiences to determine which is more successful prior to launching to a broad audience.
- Game Connect, which lets developers list their virtual goods for sale on Amazon, increasing discoverability of their games and making the purchase of virtual goods as easy and convenient as possible for customers, leading to increased monetization for developers.
- Amazon Appstore submission for distribution to nearly 200 countries globally enables developers to reach millions more of Amazon customers worldwide.
This afternoon Amazon sent out an email to developers making the same announcement:
Dear Mobile App Developer,
Your web apps or mobile optimized websites can now reach Amazon customers in nearly 200 countries worldwide on Kindle Fire and select Android smartphones.
Web developers with HTML5 apps and mobile-optimized web sites can easily get started at the Distribution Portal. Once you’re logged in, go to “My Apps”, and choose “Submit a Web App”.
More information on how to prepare and submit your web apps is here.
Get started today.
Amazon Mobile App Distribution Team