Four Ways to Reduce Risk of Having Apps Pulled from the Windows Phone Marketplace

Microsoft on its Windows Phone developers blog announced a few changes to the Windows Phone Marketplace that helps save Windows Phone developers time and reduces the risk of having their apps pulled from the Marketplace.First, Microsoft suggests of avoiding trademark trouble, "When a trademark or copyright owner contacts us about a suspected violation, we investigate […]

Microsoft on its Windows Phone developers blog announced a few changes to the Windows Phone Marketplace that helps save Windows Phone developers time and reduces the risk of having their apps pulled from the Marketplace.

First, Microsoft suggests of avoiding trademark trouble, "When a trademark or copyright owner contacts us about a suspected violation, we investigate and pull apps when the complaint is valid," posted Microsoft. For example, using "Microsoft App Co." as your publisher name would cause problems because "Microsoft" is a trademarked term.

"If you're developing an app, please consult content policy covering trademarks and this related Q. (The U.S. Trademark and Patent Office (USPTO) also has helpful background and a trademark search tool.)"

Second, Microsoft advises to pick a single category that best reflects the content and function of your app to help customers find your app and give all developers an equal opportunity to have their app discovered where people expect. It is because, the company don't want developers submit the same app to multiple Marketplace categories, which is a violation of policies.

Developers who submit the same app across multiple categories will have it removed from the catalog.

Microsoft also does not want the branding to dominate the tile and each tile should be unique if multiple apps are submitted.

Also, starting this week, Microsoft will be enforcing the "five keyword" rule for all current and future Marketplace apps. "Any app that exceeds this number will have all its keywords deleted. Affected developers will be notified and can then enter five new keywords in App Hub," Microsoft said.

Finally, Microsoft said, they are also refining its approach to content policy enforcement containing "racy, sexually suggestive or provocative" images or content.

"Specifically, we will be paying more attention to the icons, titles, and content of these apps and expect them to be more subtle and modest in the imagery and terms used. Apps that don't fit our standard will need to be updated to remain in the store. This is about presenting the right content to the right customer and ensuring that apps meet our standards. We will also monitor customer reaction to apps and reserve the right to remove ones that our customers find offensive," Brix adds.