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How to submit an app without IAP?

We had a digital signage player app on Amazon appstore.

This month we tried to update it but the update got rejected and then already approved app was removed from the appstore.

The reasoning was given to us were very unclear and general but we finally figured out the real reason: not using IAP in the app

Thanks for writing in. Your app makes digital content available for purchase inside the app, charges end users to use the app or its content, or facilitates non-Amazon account creation. Therefore, to be made available on the Amazon Appstore, it must use Amazon’s In-App Purchasing API (or other methods we make available to you) to process payment for such content, and may not facilitate or direct customers to use any other payment method (including hyperlinks or QR code) for Content intended to be used within your Mobile App. The Amazon In-App Purchasing API makes it easy for you to offer digital content --such as in-game currency, expansion packs, upgrades, magazine subscriptions, and more--for purchase within your apps. It's easy to integrate and cost-effective to get up and running quickly, and our 1-Click purchase experience is simple, secure, and trusted and can increase conversion rates for purchases within your app.

The way our app works is that when it's launched we display a PIN on the screen that then the user needs to enter it in their account (Web client) in order to pair the screen and use it as digital signage and publish content.

We charge our users based on the number of paired screens.

We have been doing it, this way for 4 years now and all our competitors have exactly the same pairing flow.

No one in the digital signage industry uses Amazon IAP for their Amazon apps but for some reason, Amazon decided to remove just our app.

The reason why IAP does not makes sense here is because:

1. The amazon Fire TV App is used as digital signage and is not interactive: so user will not be able to interact with our amazon fire tv app and get or set billing information

2. Users usually have very large digital signage networks, sometimes they have a few hundred screens so for a user it does not makes sense to manage billing from an App

3. Most often user's digital signage runs not only on Fire Tv Sticks, but other platforms too: Android TV, Roku, Apple TV, Brightsign, IAdea... and they want to have centralised billing across. Having just different billing systems for each platform won't work.

4. Our users are businesses across the globe and amazon IAP is not sophisticated enough to support diverse payment methods such as Bank Transfers or Invoice issuing in multiple currencies etc

We think it's a clear misunderstanding. It looks like Amazon Appstore support is outsourced to India and we find it very hard to communicate or explain to them the purpose of our app: Our questions are never answered and when they are, the answers are always copy and paste texts from Amazon's documentation, which is very disappointing.

We are a startup and we have already lost crazy number of clients because of this, it's especially tough to run a business during Covid but Blocking our app without any explanation is just too much.

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Jacek avatar image Jacek commented ·

Take a look at Disney+, Netflix apps, and maybe ask what you should do to implement it in the same way as they do, what have you missed to be rejected (comparing to those two apps). Those are the two biggest apps, and looks like behave exactly as your app does. My take is that your reasoning is really too complicated for the submission team.

Also, you may want to take a look at this thread, as it shows what it takes to go through a very similar process.

You may also want to consider getting on twitter.

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Mike@Amazon avatar image
Mike@Amazon answered


Because this issue is specific to your app, unfortunately we aren't able to assist in the public forums.

Please reply to one of the Contact Us cases you've already opened or open a new case so that our support team can assist you:



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Ezequiel Conte avatar image
Ezequiel Conte answered

We are facing the exact same situation and could not get a clarifying answer from Contact Us support.

We have a digital signage app that has been published for years and in our last minor update it got rejected, claiming we should use In-App Purchasing API.

I asked for clarifications on what triggered that and how can we adjust but Amazon Support keeps answering with a copy/paste message that we already see in the dashboard.

For the reasons mentioned in this question, I don't see why we should be using AIP but I can't get a clear answer from Amazon.

@Mike@Amazon Could you help escalating this? Thanks in advance.

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Ericfc avatar image
Ericfc answered

I understand your frustration with the rejection and removal of your app from the Amazon Appstore due to not using in-app purchases (IAP). While Amazon requires the use of their IAP system for certain types of content, it seems that your app's functionality and business model are not suitable for IAP integration. You have valid reasons for not implementing IAP, such as the non-interactive nature of the app, the need for centralized billing across different platforms, and the diverse payment methods required by your global user base. It appears to be a misunderstanding, and it's unfortunate that communication with Amazon's support has been challenging. I recommend reaching out to Amazon again, providing a clear explanation of your app's purpose and addressing the specific concerns raised by their rejection.

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