Google Play & Apple’s App Store are not the only distribution channels for your apps: an entire eco-system of third party app stores can help get your app noticed and monetized
App discovery and monetization remain the biggest challenges for app developers today in a global market dominated by Android. Google-owned operating system’s global market share at 85 %, meaning that nearly nine in ten phones shipped are built on Android. This indisputable domination remains however related to smartphone market share while iOS still leads the revenue share. But the third player is rising and becoming their biggest competition: the non-Google Android.
Android is present on the market in 2 forms: the Google endorsed one and the Android Open Source Project (AOSP), or the so called “forked” Android. Amazon has been modifying AOSP for its Kindle tablets and phone for some time, and it is also very common in China and India, predominantly for low cost devices .
Numerous operating systems based on AOSP, do not feature Google’s services you would expect from Android, but the proprietary services, for example the App stores that are rapidly growing and improving their offer. Usually they provide a better revenue share than the traditional ones, a target audiences in different markets, or let you offer your app as a white label product. But above all, they offer a less crowded space for newly launched apps.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the fastest growing alternative Android App stores.
Amazon is becoming one of the biggest Google competitors, with both hardware and software: Kindle Fire and the Fire Phone, both powered by Fire OS, a “forked” Android operating system. The Amazon Appstore has over 240,000 apps and they have a free app of the day feature, which is a great way to get users to return every 24 hours. It also contains a number of exclusive apps and it is very safe, safety being one of the main concerns when it comes to alternative app stores.
Aptoide, unlike all other major stores, allows app developers and brands to create and manage customized stores or channels within the platform. It has over 315,000 apps, 1.5 billion total downloads and 50 million monthly active users. One of the most important advantages of Aptoide is the fact that it requires no registration or signup: users can immediately start downloading, regardless of where they are.
Opera Mobile Store
Opera is a well-known name in the web and mobile world, and this is why it is trusted by developers and users. This app store has around 200,000 apps with all the major publishers; it receives more than 100 million visitors per month with 2 million apps downloaded per day. Publishing apps is free on the Opera Mobile Store, but developers only get 70% of the revenue from paid apps. Opera has an agreement with Yandex, Russia’s biggest search engine, which allows Opera’s apps to be shown in the Yandex App Store and vice versa.
With over 800,000 apps, 50 million users, and 3 million downloads a day GetJar is one of the most popular alternative app stores. It encourages developers to use a freemium model, displaying ads and they offer their own virtual currency, GetJar Gold. The store allows connecting via Facebook, so that the reviews and comments are based on interaction from this social media channel.
As a Russion version of Google, Yandex is dominating the local digital market, and it created their own app store, available via .apk worldwide. Backed up by Opera, the Yandex store has over 120 000 apps, and one of their strongholds is the security, provided by Kaspersky Lab.
So whether you just feel annoyed with major app stores or you’re feeling a bit adventurous these app stores will surely get you covered.
Check out more facts & figures on the alternative app stores in our latest infographic