Google at long last has added support for promo codes to the Play Store. This is a feature that has been available in the iOS App Store for ages now, but only today has the feature made its way to Android. Developers can now create promo code links for apps and games via this section in the Developer Console.

Google describes the feature as follows:

Promo codes let you give content or features away to a limited number of users free of charge. Once you create a promo code, you can distribute it subject to the terms of service. The user enters the promo code in your app or in the Play Store app, and gets the item at no cost. You can use promo codes in many ways to creatively engage with users. For example:

  • A game could have a special item, such as a character or decoration, that’s only available to players who attend an event. The developer could distribute cards with promo codes at the event, and users would enter their promo code to unlock the item.
  • An app developer might distribute promo codes at local businesses, to encourage potential users to try the app.
  • An app developer might give out “friends and family” codes to its employees to share with their friends.

There are some limitations to promo codes on Android, however. For instance, promo codes can’t be used on in-app subscriptions, but they can be used on in-app purchases. Furthermore, each app/game can issue only 500 promo codes for quarter and unused codes do not roll over to the next quarter. By default, issued promo codes are active for one year, but developers can set their own expiration date should they want to (via Phandroid).

Developers can start creating promo codes here in the Developer Console.


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About the Author

Chance Miller


Chance currently writes for both 9to5Google and 9to5Mac, in addition to 9to5Toys.