Rumor has it that the Amazon Appstore is about to hop the pond. From All Things D:
Amazon is getting close to launching its Appstore in Europe later this summer, marking the first time the store will be available outside the U.S., according to sources familiar with the company’s plans.
Timing is a little vague, but from what I’m hearing, the e-commerce giant is expected to announce next week that it will start accepting submissions from developers soon.
Similar to the Apple App Store and Google Play, Amazon’s virtual store allows consumers to download mobile apps to Android phones and tablets. Once available, the Appstore will likely work across most Android devices in Europe, but more interesting to consider is whether the announcement signals that Amazon is preparing to sell the Kindle Fire internationally.
On the eve of this major expansion, it’s important to remember that apps currently offered through the Amazon Appstore shouldn’t (and sometimes can’t) simply be added to the European shop. They need to be not only translated, but thoroughly localized as well.
Special characters, symbols, figures, phrases, cultural fit and a variety of other factors need to be adjusted to fit each new market. Cultural fit is a particularly important one. You don’t want to inadvertently offend or confuse your new market and that’s something only full localization testing can look for. If we relied solely on straight translations, the French phrase “Oh, la vache” would come to English speaking countries as “Oh, the cow” and we would be mightily confused. Developers will encounter the same issue going from English to other languages.
And let’s not forget the hardware testing that will be involved with entering a new market. Europe has more carriers than the US and different devices that will need a new round of in-the-wild testing.
I see a lot more testing on the horizon as Amazon expands.