Now here's a surprising twist. In the past, Amazon has focused on its Android and Kindle Fire partners by offering an API that enables in-app purchasing. This way, apps sold via the Amazon Appstore will allow customers to purchase virtual goods and other services using their credit card stored in Amazon's cloud. However now the company has released an API that allows developers to do the same thing with PC, Mac and web-based games.
"We’re passionate about making game developers successful, and we’ll continue to build services that make monetization easier and remove undifferentiated heavy lifting from developers," said Mike Frazzini, Director Amazon Games. "Game developers build games that are used across multiple platforms and mediums. In-App Purchasing for Mac, PC and Web-based games is our latest service that helps game developers grow their business and increase their customer-base."
Thanks to the new API, Amazon customers will be able to use any credit card, gift certificate or promotional credit associated with their current Amazon account to purchase in-app items. Developers will also be granted access to Amazon’s proven fraud detection technology, thereby reducing their exposure to fraud, the company said.
"To help developers with game discovery and marketing, in-app items will automatically be available on Amazon.com, and in-app purchases can show up on best seller lists, recommendations and merchandising campaigns, helping customers discover new games and items, while adding another point of engagement for existing players," the company said.
Amazon's largest crowd to flock to the new API will likely be the free-to-play developers and publishers currently offering more than 3,000 titles for the PC, Mac and browser in the Amazon Digital Games store. These include Second Life, APB Reloaded, MicroVolts, RuneScape, Fly for Free Forever, FreeFall Tournament, and more. However it's possible that premium titles could utilize the API in the near future as the industry leans more towards in-app purchases to generate additional revenue.
Now if they added Ubuntu support....
Agreed, the whole freemium model and idea of having to continually part with money to enjoy yourself ticks me off. But since it's convenient to coerce users into paying for more on the PC (as well as on consoles), it's not going anywhere any time soon. Having said that, I don't mind DLC; buying expansions to a game is similar to buying another game, with the knowledge that it will be similar.