Amazon app store now as bad as Google Play?

I wrote Amazon an email explaining why I think the way they handle new releases now is problematic for independent developers. I've talked to some other developers who also see this as a problem. What do you think? Here's the email I sent...

Hi, I wanted to give feedback on how I feel about the way the "Hot New Releases" are treated in the store since the beginning of this year. As a small independent developer, I began distributing apps on Amazon last year. I found it to be a great store front that gave me a decent amount of visibility when releasing new apps. Even though I have a minimal advertising budget I was able to get noticed if people liked my apps. Most of my apps did well, and one was even featured on the device by Amazon as a hot new game and later as a free app of the day. After a couple days sales I could appear on the new release tab on the device and my apps could gain some traction. But not anymore.

Now, with the way the new releases are handled, my apps aren't getting any visibility at all. I have trouble even finding my own apps anymore, unless I actually type the title in the search box. This is because in the "new" section apps are staying on the list for over a month. Not only are most of the "new" apps on the top 100 list as well, but they are taking all the visibility from the apps released within the current week. It makes it too difficult for new releases to be seen because they are competing w/ apps that have been out for several weeks. I don't see how I can reach my audience anymore through the Amazon store since I don't have a large advertising budget.

I realize there may be reasons beyond my knowledge for why this change was made to the new apps section, but I wanted to share my opinion as an independent developer. I don't feel nearly as motivated to release new apps on the Amazon app store after this change, and several other developers I've talked to share the same view. I would love to be able to continue to distribute through Amazon and have my apps reach their audience. Thanks for taking the time to read this, and hopefully it will help with future decisions regarding the app store.

Steve Hoffman

If you distribute apps on Amazon and see this as a problem, please let them know. We definitely can use all the visibility we can get and changes like this are crippling to small devs. What are some things we can do to overcome this without spending loads of money on advertising? Thanks for reading and sound off below if you have something to add.


  • mrpacogpmrpacogp Member Posts: 400
    Yes, i think the same too.
    I dont know how the company with store use the average quality of each app or top downloads...
    My app is all the week on top 10 new sales on google play with lower than 50 sales and the others have greater numbers...
    Its a joke maybe...
  • hotMagichotMagic Member, PRO Posts: 266
    The prob with amazon is that they treat the apps the same way they treat products. And it just doesn't transfer well. Apple's recent changes have made it better for indies.

    Amazon just hasn't yet solved the issue of visibility based on quality. If you look at the top apps, there're a whole lot of clone BS apps up there (like everything in the world that closely resembles minecraft in name or icon), and a lot of SEO'd crap. Apple has tried to mitigate that.
  • Fal01Fal01 Member Posts: 460
    The amount of minecraft rip-offs on there is unbelievable and they all seem to be selling like hot cakes no matter how bad the reviews are.

    I'm seriously thinking about making a Turdcraft game where you just have a block with a turd on it.

    It would race up the charts and would be a whole lot easier than what I'm trying to make at the moment!

    It’s not a bug – it’s an undocumented feature

  • CrazybreadmanCrazybreadman Member Posts: 674
    edited February 2013
    @Fal01 - Haha, yeah there's only a couple that look actually decent (played demo versions of a couple) but most are obvious cheap cash-ins. Some minecraft-rip apps have reviews saying its just screenshots or they use minecraft screens as bg for lame pong or some non related 2d game. It's so frustrating that crooked devs make a lot of money because dumb people still buy it. I wouldn't want to make my money selling crap like that though... no offense to your Turdcraft idea ;)... even though it would be easy.
  • ChakkuChakku Member Posts: 1,513

    Actually, there are apps that are legit (older than Minecraft Pocket Edition)!!
    This ones $0.99 and Universal, with 20696 ratings with an average of 4.5 Stars! :p

    I do agree with this change in Amazon :(

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