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News - Written by Jenna Pitcher on Thursday, July 1, 2010 12:55 - 9 Comments
When will Aussie Android developers be able to sell apps?
Google has issued a terse statement on the issue of Australian software developers not being able to sell apps through its app market for the Android platform, saying it’s “working hard” on bringing Australia up to speed with the rest of the world, but doesn’t have a due date just yet.
“We’re working hard on it but don’t have a time frame to share right now … these things are complex and can take some time. We hear loud and clear that people want to see paid apps for developers in Australia,” the company said in a statement.
Australia is not the only country without Android Market vendor support — other countries that are out in the cold are Canada, New Zealand and Switzerland. Meanwhile, some, such as the US and UK, have had support for the feature for some time.
The cork in the bottle appears to be Google Checkout, the online payment processing system that allows users to store their credit card information with their Google account and make payments using Google Checkout to participating online stores.
Google checkout is available in countries such the United States and the United Kingdom, but there is no support for Australia. The lack of support has frustrated Australian developers who want to to be able to sell their applications up with the rest of the global market.
Android developer James Purser wrote an open letter to Google on his blog this week. In the post, Purser vented his frustrations and openly asked Google why the company couldn’t support Australian developers.
“Why can’t I sell any apps? Is it due to the fact that the Google Checkout system doesn’t appear to support Australian merchants either?” Purser wrote. “I’ve tried looking for an official explanation but I’ve struck out. There’s lots of assumptions and rumours, but nothing there to re-assure people that the issue is going to be dealt with soon.”
At the end of his rope Purser had to do something he didn’t want to — he ended up buying an Apple product so he could see his applications released for purchase on a marketplace.
In a brief interview, part-time Android developer Peter Hopkins slammed Google Checkout as being an inferior product compared with PayPal, calling for Google out to pull its socks up if it wanted to seriously compete with the bigger marketplaces out there.
“The whole thing is ‘the ineffectual implementation of Google Checkout’,” he said. “It’s always been a lesser version of PayPal, integrated into its own ineffectual proprietary [system]. If Google want to be serious about selling anything from any of their marketplaces, in any countries, they need to put some serious effort into globalising Google Checkout.”
However, another long-time Android developer, David Morris-Oliveros, pointed out a lot of Aussie Android developers were developing apps as a pastime — they aren’t in it for the money. Their reward is to see other people make use of and/or enjoy their end product — an open open source mentality.
“There is no real incentive to develop for Android in Australia if you are already working a normal job,” he said. “I mean, it’s great to do hobby programming when I get home from work, to release it free and then see how other people enjoy what you are doing. But it would help enormously to be able to opt-in for some financial reward, too.”
To cement Talsit’s comment, another local developer, Sri Panyam — who also codes on the Android OS in his spare time — said he doesn’t develop for the money, nor has he tried to get financial gain from doing so. “I’ve actually developed for Android but never really tried selling. I thought the bigger problem was just the fragmentation of all those different versions and it being a pain to manage all those versions in your app,” he said.
Selling Australian applications is not technically impossible if you try hard enough — Australian developers such as jTribe and the team behind Alien Abduction do use a workaround to release applications and games on the marketplace using US or UK accounts.
Image credit: Google
Latest Delimiter 2.0 articles (subscriber content)
|It’s hard to imagine how things could have gone worse for Malcolm Turnbull in his first three months as Communications Minister. With the public rapidly turning on the Earl of Wentworth over his horribly unpopular new NBN policy, a growing perception that he’s stacking NBN Co with partisan staff and a lack of transparency verging on the hypocritical, it’s hard to find positives for the Earl of Wentworth from his initial period in office. Turnbull is truly fumbling the catch on both political and functional levels.|
|Politicians from Australia’s major parties need to stop issuing ludicrous blanket pardons for the intelligence community’s ongoing misdemeanours and start applying a basic modicum of transparency and accountability to this important national security function.|
|The independent pro-fibre National Broadband Network movement is doing a far better job of promoting Labor’s Fibre to the Premises-based NBN policy than Labor itself. When is Labor going to wake from its slumber and start supporting this scrappy but energetic grassroots network of activists?|
|Ziggy Switkowski's first substantial public appearance since being appointed NBN Co chief executive has starkly demonstrated just how different he is from his predecessor, Mike Quigley, and just how strictly he will adhere to the guidelines which his patron, Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, has set for him.|
|Australian technology companies have been virtually absent from the the nation’s public stockmarket over the past decade as the stigma of the dot com bust took its toll on investor confidence. But a clutch of new listings planned for the closing months of 2013 shows renewed interest in the sector and that local entrepreneurs are smelling money in the air once again.|
|NBN Co’s Strategic Review process gives the company an unmissable opportunity to re-evaluate the early decision to deploy its FTTP network primarily through Telstra’s underground ducts. The company and its new Coalition masters must now seriously consider deploying more fibre aerially on power poles in an effort to speed up its rollout substantially.|
|That moment which many Australian technologists fervently hoped for but never expected to see has come to pass: Simon Hackett has been appointed to the board of the National Broadband Network Company. But what questions should the Internode founder be asking NBN Co’s executive management team? Here’s five ideas to start with.|
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