InMobi, the mobile advertising platform, has launched App Publish – an Android app store distribution platform. The platform, which is available for free, allows Android developers to publish their Android apps either free, freemium or paid across 130+ app stores at once.
Although the company states that it offers apps to be published to 130+ stores, its app store page only mentions 120 app stores. The app stores includes Opera App Store, Mobango, Slide Me, couple of telco managed app stores, among others. Interestingly, we couldn’t find GetJar, one of the popular third party app store in the list of app stores supported by App Publish. App Publish is a product of InMobi’s acquisition of Metaflow Solutions, a UK-based mobile app management and distribution solution provider.
The company has been beta testing the platform with app developers and claims that early beta testers of App Publish have seen 30% more downloads through these new app store channels. It’s important for app developers to submit their apps to third party app stores for better visibility. With more than 800,000 apps in the Google Play Store, app discovery remains a major issue for developers and users, which drives users to third party app stores. Submitting apps to multiple app stores at once through the App Publish platform avoids challenges for developers such as navigation through international laws, tracking an reporting downloads and installs, the company reports.
If you already have an account: Note that app developers, who currently have an account on these these third party app stores, won’t be able to use the same account through the App Publish platform to submit new apps, which could be a limitation for developers that can’t be ignored. Developers can also track the number of downloads and revenues from paid apps in the dashboard. Interestingly, InMobi does not require developers to use InMobi’s mobile advertising service in their app while submitting the app, developers can use their own preferred mobile ad network.
Monetization: It’s not clear how InMobi plans to monetize the platform, as it offers the service for free, nor does it compel developers to use their mobile advertising platform on the app submitted through their tool.
While App Publish is restricted to Android apps, according to a report by TechCrunch, it appears that they might also add an ability to submits apps to Windows Phone independent App Stores.
Other InMobi Developments
In January 2013, InMobi acquired a UK-based mobile data analytics startup Overlay Media. While InMobi has not yet come up with a separate offering based on this acquisition, the company typically rebrands its acquisition to offer its service.
In November 2012, InMobi, had launched a new platform called InMobi Lifetime Value Platform (LTVP), which aims to allow premium publishers and app developers improve their user engagement and increase the customer lifetime value, by providing app analytics, user segmentation and insights into app usage. The platform was a product of InMobi’s acquisition of Metaflow solutions along with its MMTG Labs acquisition.
Besides this, InMobi had renamed its HTML5 ad authoring platform Sprout as InMobi Studio in September 2012. The company had claimed to have added various new features to the platform including ad development, engagement reporting and analytics, after the original acquisition in August 2011.