The upcoming Android App Store of Amazon is expected to have terms that would allow the company to add copy protection to the applications, against developers’ will. The developer agreement for the store is supposed to give Amazon the right to change an application in order to use technologies that enable digital rights management. Developers may choose to make applications possible to be copied but would not be able to choose anything else but Amazon’s option of digital rights management.
The terms would help users because the store would keep copies of the applications for necessary re-downloads even when pulled from the store, but would ban any application from launching on Android Market or other store before reaching Amazon’s portal. Similar terms have often been negotiated by the retailer for e-books belonging to the Kindle store.
The price should be similar to Apple’s, i.e. a $99 yearly fee. programmers would have the possibility to choose between either a cut of the selling price, valued at 70 percent or 20 percent of the list price.
The rules are not expected to prevent sideloading applications from the web or outside of a store, but would enforce a behavior similar to the iOS App Store on a so-called open platform. Google itself has a layer of protection but never sets similar level of terms for digital rights management or for accessing applications beyond its doors.
The reason for Amazon’s store is not so clear, but it would probably want to enter mobile software as desktop software declines and a tablet is rumored to appear sometime after making ready the store.