The Android Market is not the only consolidated market available for selling Android applications. Because Android is an open platform, there is nothing preventing a handset manufacturer or an operator (or even you) from running an Android marketplace website or building an Android application that serves as a market.
Here are a few marketplaces where you might consider distributing your Android applications:
► SlideME—This is an Android-specific distribution community for free and commercial applications, using an on-device store (http://slideme.org).
► AndAppStore—This site offers Android-specific distribution for free applications, using an on-device store (http://www.andappstore.com).
► SHOP4APPS—This application store run by Motorola targets China (http://developer.motorola.com/shop4apps/).
► MobiHand—This site distributes mobile applications for a wide range of devices for free and commercial applications (http://www.mobihand.com).
This list is not complete, and we don't specifically endorse any one market over another, but it is important to note that there are a number of alternative distribution mechanisms available to developers. Application requirements vary by store. In addition to these, many manufacturers and wireless operators have their own stores, especially for devices that don't include the "Google experience" (that is, devices that don't include Google apps, such as the Android Market).
Third-party application stores are free to enforce whatever rules they want on the applications they accept, so carefully read the fine print at each site. A particular site may enforce content guidelines, require additional technical support, and enforce digital signing requirements. Only you and your team can determine which sites are suitable for your specific needs.
Did you Know?
Anyone can develop a new Android application store and market applications on his or her own terms. That's one of the benefits of an open and free platform.
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