Google is getting more hands-on with apps for its Android TV platform, opting to test and approve each one before it goes live in the Play Store.
It’s the same method Apple uses for all of its apps submitted to the App Store, though Google is only wielding this tight control for its TV platform.
The particulars of this policy are found in the Android developer documentation page. The key section reads, “Before distributing apps to the Play Store on Android TV devices, our team reviews apps for usability with a DPAD (apps) and Gamepad (games only) and other quality guidelines.”
By contrast phone, tablet, and smartwatch apps are handled the same—you just need a Google Play developer account and a properly configured APK to publish them. However, Google does have the ability to nix your app if it violates any of the company’s rules.
Why this matters: This is Google’s second go at a TV platform, following the rather disastrous Google TV. Gaming is a major point of emphasis with Android TV, with Google selling a controller as an accessory to its Nexus Player. If it’s going to catch on, it needs consumers raving about how the $100 TV puck is an awesome gaming device.