Amazon steps up benefits for UK Fire OS app developers

Amazon hopes to entice more UK software developers to create apps for its Android-based Fire smartphone by offering them access to a slew of tools and perks.

The retail giant has launched its Appstore Developer Select programme in the UK, which is aimed at software developers that create apps and games for its Fire OS software.

To gain entry to the programme, developers' apps need to be optimised for use with the Amazon Appstore and render natively when used with Fire OS devices.

The vendor claims 75 per cent of Android apps work on Fire OS without requiring any additional coding. Existing developers of apps for the platform will be automatically enrolled on the programme.

Programme members will benefit from improved app placement in the Amazon Appstore, the company promises, and will also be able to offer customers Amazon Coins as a reward for purchasing their apps.

This currency will also be passed on to customers that download apps created by Appstore Developer Select partners when they make in-app purchases.

It can then be used by end users to buy further apps or games from the Amazon Appstore.

The company is offering additional sweeteners for developers that create apps for the US market that take advantage of features offered by its recently announced Fire smartphone.

These include offering developers 500,000 Amazon Coins to be distributed to US customers that purchase their apps and games.

All members of the programme also receive AWS credits, which knocks off 25 per cent of the cost of the first $2,000 they spend on the firm's cloud services.

Mike George, vice president of Amazon Appstore and Games, said the programme's aim is to address the app discovery issues developers suffer from when trying to market apps across various platforms and devices.

"With the Appstore Developer Select programme, we're addressing these discoverability concerns by providing developers with enhanced merchandising opportunities. In addition, we're helping drive sales by offering Coins rewards on high quality, engaging apps for customers," George added.

Developers interested in submitting an app to the Appstore Developer Select programme can do so here.

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.