The New Google Play Developer Policy, Ad Limitations and HomeBase Compliance

Google Approved

Everybody loves the spring time- the birds are singing, flowers are blooming, all the trees are waking up from their long winter sleep, and our friends at Mountain View have released an updated to the Google Play Developers Policy.

As you probably know, Google updates their Developers Content Policy every now and then in order to adjust to the ever changing market. This new update targets apps that hold suspicious and shady behavior, the kind that may put end users and their devices in danger. It’s old news that Google puts its best efforts trying to enforce their own set of strict rules, all in the name of privacy and well-being of their users. After all, it’s not that easy to create a

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safe environment for more than 1 billion devices from all over the world. Among the changes included on this latest update, developers may found clarifications about explicit content, in-app purchasing guidelines, server connections limitations and the prohibition to add or tweak bookmarks, search provider, and homepage settings. Alongside these changes, the update focuses on the way apps deliver ads, by adding a whole new section to the policy called “App Promotion”:
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HomeBase Welcomes Rev Share

RevShare

As part of our efforts to make HomeBase the most valuable monetization platform in the Android market, we’re always looking for new ways to retain top tier developers as our partners. We know that HomeBase partners are the ones who drive our creation forward, and that is exactly why we work around the clock to ensure their satisfaction.

Since the first HomeBase partner joined our lock screen revolution almost two years ago, we’ve made various changes in our rewards program. Some changes came from us, but most of the changes came directly from developers that wanted to find new ways to make the most out of their app and were looking to improve their app’s revenue stream. About three months ago, we’ve decided to reward those top notch partners who deliver an exceptionally good experience for their users by implementing the “AppScore” system.

After listening to what our partners had to say about AppScore and getting dozens of feedbacks about the system, we’ve decided that AppScore may not be the optimal solution for value-delivering app developers. Among many other requests and useful insights, most developers were asking for a more transparent model that will still carry great value.

And we’ve listened.

Starting on 02/26/2014, AppScore will be upgraded to revenue share model. The migration process may take up to one week. The revenue sharing (or Rev Share) model is used by over 80% of affiliate programs, as it is the easiest, most effective way for partners to create meaningful revenues. HomeBase will share its income from ads and offers displayed on the lock screen with developers who implemented the SDK, so they can have a piece of the pie every time the user interacts with an offer. The major change that the Rev Share model will make is to shift the control over monetization from our hands to our partners. Up until now, AppScore was calculated by combining several variables like users’ geo location and retention, but from now on, our partners control their app’s income. You’ve created a highly engaging app that keeps

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high retention and exposure? Awesome, that means more money for you.

If that’s not enough, HomeBase will offer one of the highest Rev Share percentage in the industry, so you can get the most out of your app. We’ve also updated our admin panel’s analytic system so it’s now easier to track revenues and optimize apps performance. The Rev Share model will take effect starting on the next payment.

For more information about the new Rev Share model, feel free to contact your account manager with any issue or question.

HomeBase Gets a Security Update

HomeBase Security

Earlier this week we were informed that HomeBase SDK is subject to a certain vulnerability issue. As a company focused on delivering the best user experience out there, security issues are always marked high on our priority list- and that’s exactly why it’s important to us to terminate any security issue regarding out products, as minor as it may be.

The issue was first discovered by a group of security experts that put HomeBase SDK through various tests in order to find any vulnerability issue that may affect the end user. During one of these tests, they found an issue concerning HomeBase remote update. Every time an app bundled with HomeBase gets installed on a device, HomeBase unpacks itself and sends a request to our servers in order to get the latest version available. If this process is executed over an insecure connection (public Wi-Fi, hijacked router etc.), it was found that a third-party agent may interfere and send an infected JAR file that replaces the original HomeBase update.
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Introducing AppScore, The New Way to Measure Your App’s Engagement Level

Keeping end-users in mind, we’re always seeking for new ways to improve our products and offered services. As part of these improvements, we’re looking for high quality partners that create high quality apps. So, how can we tell which are the most engaging apps out there? We’ve decided to let end-users be the judges- after all, they are the ones who know best.

The main reason developers choose to integrate their app with HomeBase is that it offers them the opportunity to deliver elements from their app into their users’ lock screen. We encourage developers to utilize the full power of HomeBase because we’ve learned that higher engaging apps equal better performance and rewards.

Those rewards are reflected by the AppScore ladder, our new ranking system for engaging apps. How does AppScore work? It’s easy. First of all, we collect anonymous data about how users interact with the app. This data includes several variables like install/uninstall ratio, app’s retention level, number of times HomeBase been interacted with, HomeBase’s customization level and more.

We then use this data, and AppScore ranks the app on a scale of 1 to 100, where 100 is the highest score an app can get. This rank provides true insights about how well built the app is, and how users react to it (and of course, the way they it works alongside HomeBase).

If you’re looking for ways to increase your AppScore and get tips on how to improve your app’s engagement level and retention, contact your account manager or follow our blog regularly.

Happy earnings everybody!

P.S

If you still haven’t integrated HomeBase, start off by creating your free account by clicking here.

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Keep Your Google Play Compliance With Widdit’s Homebase

This is a featured post by Jonathan Klinger, recently appointed Widdit’s compliance officer and an Israeli Cyberlaw attorney.

Jonathan is a bachelor of Law, Government, Diplomacy and Strategy and a Master of Law, and was selected as one of the leading practitioners in the field of Privacy and E-Commerce by Who’s Who Legal 500.

 

As Widdit’s Compliance Officer, I followed Widdit’s development of the HomeBase SDK and other applications, and am involved in the ongoing development. According to Widdit’s strategic plan, the HomeBase SDK was designed in such manner that it was consistent with Google Play’s Developer Program Policies and Distribution Agreement before the recent changes, and is also consistent and adherent to the recent changes without any changes to the SDK.

The reasons for such adherence is that the HomeBase SDK is not just another adware application or just ads advertisements to the applications which distribute it, but that the HomeBase SDK provides additional functionality which is desired by many end-users and has gained popularity.

Google’s recent changes were mostly, in the following additional restrictions:

1. Ads cannot be displayed outside the application or hinder other applications;

2. Applications cannot add homescreen shortcuts;

3. Applications cannot change default user settings without explicit consent.

The general rule of “don’t do anything that the user did not ask for” remains consistent throughout Widdit’s operation: The HomeBase SDK prompts the end-user, during its first run, to confirm that it wants to change his default lockscreen and provides him with additional rich functionality. There are no hidden changes, and there are no hidden features: everything is prominent.

Moreover, HomeBase’s business model is not based on changing default search applications or just placing icons on users’ homescreens: that’s bad practice and was proven, in the long run, to be a non-viable business model.

Lastly, Widdit does not inject advertisements or interferes with other applications. We create different a new way to interact with users, and users seem to like it.

During the last month, I conducted an exhaustive review of the HomeBase SDK, and held numerous meetings with Widdit’s dev team and staff, all to make this product better for your privacy, and to ensure that it serves the best interests of the users who installed it, and allows new monetization channels.

Widdit was found fully compliant to Google’s terms, and as we can see, even after the update, no change is required to comply with the new restrictions.

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The New Google Developer Policy- A Safer Experience Is The Name Of The Game

When Sergey Brin and Larry Page established Google back in 1998, they were focused on creating the best search experience the world ever knew. 15 years later, it seems that the minds behind the search giant never cease to improve their products (and by now, there are a LOT of products) so users will always get the best experience in the market.

Keeping user experience on top of the order of priorities is something every company out there can learn from. It doesn’t matter if you’ve developed a life changing product worth a (potentially) billion dollars- without users, it’s useless. Google knows that, and that’s exactly the reason they are the industry leaders.
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HomeBase – Facebook Edition Is Here!

HomeBase Social

As part of our mission to deliver engaging and valuable products to our users, we’ve published a social version of HomeBase aimed to bring our users closer to their friends. The version was first launched about three months ago, right before Facebook launched “Home” on the HTC First.

Though a little buggy sometimes, HomeBase Social received great comments from users who looked for a “Home” like experience without having to purchase the “First”. After logging in to Facebook, HomeBase social brought the user’s news feed directly to the lock screen, minus the ads and sponsored content.

To celebrate HomeBase Social’s 100,000th download milestone, we’ve released a HUGE update that includes great new features alongside an improved and holds a much slicker UI.

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To open up your appetite, here are some of the new winning features of HomeBase Social:

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Meet Us @ Casual Connect Taking Place In SF July 30 – August 1

Casual Connect

Nir of the House Widdit the first of his Name, king of monetization and the first of men, lord of the seven SDKs and protector of Android invites you to meet and discuss innovative ways to monetize and engage your Android app.

Drop him an email to schedule an appointment at nir@widdit.com.

Casual Connect offers leading developers the opportunity to meet and chat about business innovations. With

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The Dark Side Of The SDK

The Dark Side

 

On the last

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, we’ve discussed the downsides of in-app advertising- on this one we’ll analyze the pros and cons of the SDK. As an Android developer, you are exposed to all kinds of different monetization solutions. There are a lot companies out there that want you to implant their product and help you make money out of your app, but how can you choose which one will help you reach your goals? In order to find out, we recommend doing some research before running to the first company that promises “BIG BUCKS” or “GRET VALUE”. Continue reading

Mobile Ads- Annoying, Invasive, Useless?

Mobile Ads

Many app developers ask themselves “Okay, I’ve developed a killer app- Now what?” On the quest of finding the best way to make money out of apps, they discover many ways to monetize apps- paid apps, freemium apps, Google ads, Sponsored links, integrated offers, banners, and what not. But which business model works best? And what do users really prefer? Well, there is really no one magical solution that fits all. Every app has its own strengths and weaknesses, and now day’s developers can even combine multiple monetization solutions in order to bank the most out of their creation.

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