Google has already provided Android developers with in-app purchases, it introduced the feature about a year ago and 23 of the top 24 grossing apps already use the feature, but now it’s expanding on that experience by adding in-app subscriptions. Beginning today, developers will be able to automatically build a subscription model into their applications, which means you should be able to automatically renew your subscription to Order & Chaos, for example, instead of making a separate purchase each time you want to extend your gameplay.
Google is introducing two subscription models: monthly and annual, and any developer can use the feature. Google Play takes all of the legwork out for developers, too, and will manage all of the transactions made by app users. Users will receive an email each time they are billed for a renewal and Google will also keep the up to date on any changes in the subscription plan.
“Developers can use [subscriptions] to monetize premium dynamic content such as journals and magazines, but they can also use them to sell access to bundled products, game levels, music and video content, value-added services, or any other digital content,” Google’s Ibrahim Elbouchikhi, Product Manager on the Google Play team, explained in a blog post.
Several new apps will launch in the coming days that take advantage of the new subscription model. Glu Mobile’s Frontline Commando is one such app that will offer subscriptions for in-app VIP currency purchases. “We’re using Google Play subscriptions to offer consumers a compelling value and a single currency which they can use across Glu’s most popular titles” Niccolo de Masi, CEO of Glu, explained. “We’re excited to bring these capabilities to our Android users and we believe that Google Play subscriptions will fuel further growth in our business.” Subscriptions will be available to any Android user with Google Play 3.5 or newer.