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Paid content for Android multi-issue apps

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Configuring in-app purchases for your issues

Adding in-app purchases in the Google Play Developer Console

With multi-issue (kiosk) apps, the app itself is usually offered for free, but (certain) app content may be available as an in-app purchase.

If your app offers only free content, there's nothing else to configure but adding your content to the Twixl Distribution Platform.

When you want to add an in-app purchase to your kiosk application for Android, you will need to configure this at two locations:

  • Google Play Developer Console : Here you will set the price for the in-app purchase and add a description
  • Twixl Distribution Platform : Here you will upload your different issues (publications)
In-App Products

Go to https://play.google.com/apps/publish and select your app from the list and go to In-app Products. Select Add new product and then you will see three options :

  • Managed Product : This is the type of product we are going to use. This product can only be purchased once by a customer and once it has been purchased, it remains valid forever.
  • Unmanaged product: This type of product can be purchased many times and is not used in a Twixl Publisher multi-issue app. It is mainly used in games (for example, an extra life or food or coins…)
  • Subscription : A subscription lets you sell content with recurring monthly or annual billing.
Add New Product

Select Managed Product and fill in the product id you want the In-app purchase to have. We recommend that you take your app id and add an extra string to it. For example :

Android application ID : com.casablancapublishing.rickscafe

In-app product IDcom.casablancapublishing.rickscafe.oct2014

If you follow this naming convention, it will make it easier to manage all your in-app purchases.

The next big step is to determine the price of your in-app purchase. It’s possible to set a different price for every country, but in 99% of the cases you can use the Auto-convert prices now button.

New Managed Product

You are now ready to save this In-app Purchase. You can do this by selecting Inactive at the top of the page and change it to Activate. By doing this, you also automatically save the page.

Managed Product Details

Adding issues as in-app purchases in the Twixl Distribution Platform

For each of the in-app purchases defined in Google Play, you also need to add issues in the Twixl Distribution Platform, and select "Purchase" as the issue type.

IMPORTANT:

Make sure the product identifier in the Twixl Distribution Platform matches exactly with the one you defined for the In-app Product in Google Play.

Adding issues as in-app purchases in the Twixl Distribution Platform

In-app purchase testing

After you added your in-app products for your app in Google Play, you can test your purchases:

  1. Create a Google Play build of your app
  2. Upload the app to Google Play as an alpha or beta
  3. Create license test accounts for authorized users (in Developer Console, go to Settings > Account details, then in the License Testing section, add the addresses to the field "Gmail accounts with testing access"
  4. Test your in-app purchases with one of the test accounts - these allow you to purchase any of your in-app products without being charged

IMPORTANT NOTE:

Sometimes you may get the error "This version of the application is not configured for billing through Google Play. Check the help center for more information".  Note that Google takes a while to process applications and update them to their servers (anywhere from a couple of hours to a day). So after uploading the APK on Google Play, you may have to wait a few hours before the in-app products will allow to be purchased.

Adding subscriptions in your multi-issue app

For details on how to setup subscriptions for an Android app, please check this article.

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