Kongregate ban from Android Market "bizarre"

GameStop app pulled for being "another app store"

More details have emerged about Google's surprise barring of Kongregate Arcade from its Android Market.

The GameStop-owned app acted as a hub for free Flash games hosted on, but was removed from the Android Market mere hours after release "for unknown reasons."

Kongregate boss CEO Jim Greer has since told Joystiq that Arcade was pulled because "they claim you can't use their app store to distribute another app store - which is a reasonable restriction.

"But to us, what's really bizarre, to call [Kongregate Arcade] an 'app store' seems like a pretty extreme stretch."

Greer claimed that the app had been shown to a number of Google representatives prior to release, who had responded very positively, "but they weren't the decision makers, unfortunately."

Drawing attention to the number of dubious applications on the Market, including "Game Boy ROMs and things like that", Greer claimed that "I'm not ready to say it's a philosophical shift from Google; you could misinterpret our app and think those are all native experiences, but right now I'm just confused."

Arcade was, he maintained, "playing content in a browser" rather than acting as an App Store. It is possible Google has become more sensitive to the concept of any potential Market rival, due to a recent announcement from Amazon that it would release its own alternative Android app store.

Google allows alternative stores to be installed on Android devices, but not via Market. Arcade thus remains available for manual install from Kongregate.

More stories

CMA to investigate Apple's & Google's influence over the mobile market

The UK government division also launches investigation into Google's app store payment practices

By Jeffrey Rousseau

GameStop's net sales for Q1 2022 hit $1.38 billion

Software & collectible revenue for the quarter saw an increase as hardware dropped by 4% year-over-year

By Jeffrey Rousseau

Latest comments (9)

Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 11 years ago
Bizarre indeed, how can you compare this to Game Boy ROMS?

I don't think they understand the nature of Kongregate at all...

So if this 'Kongregate App store' was available elsewhere and not directly on the market that's fine?
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Well, you could argue that it is an App store. It certainly is a distribution platform for Flash games that otherwise could also be distributed independently. Still I don't see why it should be banned. Google certainly collected some evil points with the gaming community for this one.

Also, it's a big shame to not have my favorite flash platform on my Motorola.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 11 years ago
I guess you can argue it either way, I agree it's definitely a distribution platform. But it's a bit overkill in my opinion. I just downloaded it for my HTC Desire.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Show all comments (9)
James Boulton Owner, Retro HQ Ltd11 years ago
It's only banned from the marketplace, just download and install it.

Google doesn't have the same monopolistic closed distribution system that Apple does.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 11 years ago
That's what I've done, I got it straight from the Kongregate site. And that's true that's something to be thankful for!
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Graham Simpson Tea boy, Collins Stewart11 years ago
They'll shift even more copies now. It's the banned app that everyone will want to check out.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Erin H Content Manager 11 years ago
I wil probably download it just for the hell of it now - though I was interested anyway. I kinda see where they're coming from but it's a bit much as the games don't even seem paid for. Bit short-sighted really - I thought the point of Android was you can do whatever you want?
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 11 years ago
Erin, you can do whatever you want on Android, and Kongregate has always been available to Android owners. Nobody, however, said you could do whatever you want in Google's app store. I doubt you will be able to do whatever you want in Amazon's, either, and certainly you can't do whatever you want on Kongregate's web site.

I wonder if Google App Store's issue might be related to being unable to properly rate the games on Kongregate because new ones keep coming in, or something like that. It seems unlikely to be related to app store competition from Amazon: how does giving Amazon the chance to take on an app that Google doesn't have help Google?

At any rate, Google should be selling this whole thing to developers as an Android success: here's a developer who is still out there distributing their app and making money even though they can't sell it through Google's App Store. Had the developer been in the same situation with the iPhone, they'd be screwed right now.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Erin H Content Manager 11 years ago
True, true. Removing it from the Marketplace hardly takes it away from the user at all. I suppose lack of moderation may be an issue for them though they didn't state that as far as I know. And yeah in a weird way it IS a case in point for the openess of Android. I highly doubt it's much to do with Amazon making their own marketplace - though of course we can expect NOT to see that on Google's Marketplace either (and rightly so in that particular case).
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.