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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Google Play gets serious about content rating

And introduces global age based app rating system.

Google has announced the introduction of a new rating system for games and apps on Google play. This rating system is set to kick in by May 2015. All the developers are expected to update their apps with this new rating system else their apps will be marked as unrated and may not reach the intended audience.

According to the tech giant, Google Play's new rating system will also include official ratings from the International Age Rating Coalition (IARC) and its participating bodies, with territories not covered by a specific ratings authority to display an age-based, generic rating.
Google Play, Google's marketplace for Android application reaches over a billion people in 190 countries. Google began reviewing the apps a long pending demand by its users. Apple in turn has always been reviewing apps however google left it open for developers that came in for criticism from its users. This has come just a month after it was forced to pull down handful of apps for spreading adware and malware. However it been a trigger for tremendous increase in the number of apps listed in Google Play. How this new rating system will effect the developers is to be seen.
Even if you have some apps already in the store, you need to fill in a questionnaire. Apps that are unrated wont be displayed in stores requiring age ratings. So its in the best interest of the developer to rate their apps before May 2015.

The rules of the game are being changed. Its best to be prepared. We will review the rating system once again in May after it kicks in to explain its effects.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Extracting APK from device

Extracting an APK file from your android device is very easy. However if you check the android forums then the method mentioned there will ask you to root the device or install custom apps.

Here I explain a method to extract APK from your un-rooted device directly without the need to download any app. You just need to download the SDK and use adb (android debugger) present in the platform-tools folder.

1. First step is to connect the device and make sure it is recognized. If the device is not recognized then the device driver has to be installed. Run adb or the command adb.exe devices and make sure it is recognized.

2. List the apks present in the device by running the command mentioned below.
"adb.exe shell pm list packages"

3. Get the exact path of the app you are interested in by running the command
"adb.exe shell pm path com.example.someapp"

4. Using the exact path of the app
"adb.exe pull /data/app/com.example.someapp-2.apk C:/Users/.../Desktop/myapp.apk"

This will copy the apk directly to your desktop.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

android platform mobile handsets - experience publising your first android app

Publishing a new android application on google play is very simple.

1. write your application. There are already may blogs and ready documentation on this so wont go into the details here.

2. Generate the signed APK. If you are using eclipse this is pretty straightforward. You only need to export the application using a keystore (for the first time you need to generate it).

3. Test the APK generated on the device.

4. Go though the publishing checklist. This will help you decide on ithe various publishing options.

5. Create the publisher account (if you are going to publish in google play). To register as a publisher you need to pay $25. This can be done through your visa/master credit cards.

6. Submit the application: After creating the account you can give the description of the application and submit it within the publisher account. The application will go live within a matter of few minutes.

 Link to my first android app:

These are the minimum list of the things that you need to do to publish your app. However there are other features like IP protection, app statistics, future support etc that you need to think about before publishing your app.

There are some android tools that are useful like this one for image processing asset studio

App statistics: Google has the google analytics that available for free by google. This can be integrated with your android app to get the app statistics.

Also for submitting the app you need to publish some screenshots. Capture screenshots instructs you how to capture screenshots from your android phone.

Marketing: When you publish your app you also need to think about how would you like to market the application. Option to rate your app is a must as this will definitely drive more people into your application. Also if you have a link to provide feedback you can get inputs as to how to improve your app.

Advertizing: If you would like to place some advertisements then you can sign up for admob or other advertising solutions.