India’s mobile app market is set to get another alternative app store as financial service PhonePe launches a new storefront.
The Indus Appstore is "a native Android-based mobile app store, designed to fulfil the localised and cultural needs of Indian consumers". The app store was first announced earlier this year, and PhonePe has now announced the addition of new tools for Indian developers that will allow them to showcase their titles with the Indus Appstore Developer Platform.
Pushing its new storefront beyond simple distribution channels, PhonePe promises the store will have 12 languages available at launch - an especially valuable feature considering India is one of the most multilingual countries in the world.
"India is poised to have over one billion smartphone users by 2026 offering us a massive opportunity to build a new-age, localised Android app store. Despite being such a large consumer market, app developers have always been forced to work with only one app store for distributing their apps," stated PhonePe.
"Indus Appstore hopes to provide app developers with a credible alternative to Google Play Store, one that is more localised and offers better app discovery and consumer engagement. We are excited to open the Indus Appstore Developer Platform today and invite all developers to list their app on the Made-in-India app store.”
India’s development platform
India has seen a swathe of new alternative app stores launching recently, such as mSeva. As the Indian market continues to grow in both size and scope it seems that traditional app stores are at risk of falling behind. With one of Indus’ main selling points being the numerous languages available it’s clear that localisation is a key concern - and a niche to be exploited by local developers, publishers and distributors.
There's not currently a Tencent nor NetEase equivalent in India and thus the country is still full of smaller developers all vying for international and national prominence, meaning developer toolkits like these will be equally as valuable and sought after as those offered by larger firms.