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Mobile Buzz: Android Abandons Adult

Stephen Yagielowicz
Google’s recent move to add content ratings to apps in its Android Market has underscored the care with which developers must choose and target their audiences; never assuming that “Android = adult.” Indeed, that wishful notion has helped propel the platform’s popularity within adult circles, following Apple’s decidedly anti-adult stance; but could new adult content restrictions spell the end of this market?

Two adult industry insiders say “no.”

“Unless it also applies to third-party app stores, I don’t think this will affect developers of adult apps at all, because sexually explicit apps aren’t allowed in Android Market to begin with,” Pink Visual’s Q Boyer told XBIZ. “As it stands now, if you want to do a porn Android app, you have to house that sucker on MiKandi or other app store.”

Boyer added that while he has been trying to learn whether content restrictions could possibly be imposed on third-party Android app stores, no definitive answer is available.

MiKandi cofounder Jen McEwen says that the company appreciates Google’s attempt to add some clarity as to what is allowed in the Android Market and what isn’t.

“It is important to note that although the Android Market is closed to explicit sexual content, the Android OS itself, unlike the iPhone iOS, is open for all brands and developers,” McEwen told XBIZ. “This means that brands have the freedom to share their adult apps any way they see fit — be it on their own sites, in the adults-only app store MiKandi, or both.”

She offered that unlike the iPhone App Store, the Android Market allows sexually suggestive applications.

“We have been encouraging brands to share a censored, softer version of their app in the official Android Market, and publish the uncensored version in MiKandi,” McEwen told XBIZ. “What we hear from our registered developers and brands is that that they are seeing higher conversion rates in MiKandi than in other markets they participate in.”

“Since we have a focused audience, our users come to MiKandi with intent to download the kind of content our developers are specifically offering,” McEwen added.

You can learn more about Android content developer guidelines at www.android.com/us/developercontent-policy.html.

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