Android Market 'unlikely' to open in China

Despite reports that Google is looking to renew its 'push' in China once more, sources suggest that their hopes to bring Android Market to the country might be far-fetched.
Written by Hana Stewart-Smith, Contributor on

Despite the Wall Street Journal reporting only last week that Google was hoping to bring Android Market to China, it seems that goal might be still a long way away.

Daniel Algere, a top executive for Google in Asia, suggested the company was looking to renew its push forward in China, a few years after Google famously 'pulled out' of the country.

However, some elements of that push may be harder to realise than others.

According to a report from Inside Mobile Apps, a source familiar to the matter has suggested that Android Market, "is probably not coming to China anytime soon".

The source said that discussions were still in the "exploratory" stage, and that: "It's not really happening."

Unfortunately, the main issue is the difficulty of passing through the regulations required by the Chinese government. It is no secret that China is big on censorship. Any large platforms need to adhere to a strict review process for their apps.

For Google to bring Android Market to China they would have to make exceptions to their review process specifically to adhere to these regulations. Considering Google's history with censorship in China, this would be a decision that would anger a lot of supporters.

As Inside Mobile App's commented, it could be seen as a 'hypocritical' move for Google.

At the moment developers can publish apps freely on the Android application store without a prior reviewing process. Apps are instead reviewed afterwards and removed if need be.

Presently the Android Market is blocked in China, and in its place many alternative local app stores have filled the void. Considering how huge the market is in China,  it's no surprise that Google doesn't want to miss out on that opportunity.


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