China’s app markets: first hand experience

After the introduction of China’s app markets and listing a few tips on how to reach them, today we shift the spotlight onto you: the developers who have actually done it and can share first-hand experience. Today our guest is Dimitar Grudev, co-founder of

Here is what Dimitar shared with us.

Most Chinese operators and publishers have more or less the same requirements:

  • Localization
    Localization is very important. You are not allowed to use English or other foreign words or phrases. Even the name of your app and “Loading…” on the loading screen should be properly translated.
  • Vocabulary
    There are very strict rules about the vocabulary used in your app or game. You are given a list of forbidden words and phrases and need to make sure neither of them appears in the finished product.
  • Proprietary SDKs
    Most markets require integration of their SDK even if you don’t need to use any of its specifics, typically in-app purchases.
  • In-app purchases
    These work a bit differently in China than what we are used to with Apple’s App Store and Google Play. Payments are normally done via an SMS and the price of the purchase is then added to the user’s monthly phone bill.


He also stressed the importance of staying on top of your app’s activity.

  • Game Analytics
    This is not a market requirement, but good-to-have. With the markets’ varying ways of tracking in-app purchases and other activity, it is important that you collect your own data as a baseline for comparison to what the market thinks your game has earned.


And finally, Dimitar had something to add on the tricky topic of communication we touched on in our opening post.

  • Communication takes time
    You need to be prepared that communication with the market, especially via email, may take some time. This is especially true when you deal with huge operators like China Mobile, Huawai or Wakti. Any request, starting with obtaining keys for the proprietary SDKs and getting to releasing a game on the market, may take weeks or months.


Zebrito is a young and ambitious team of programmers and designers whose passion is gaming. They have released games for the App Store and on Google Play and are currently expanding into the vast markets of China.

Have a look at this video featuring their signature game: Zebrito’s Escape, in which you help an innocent zebra escape from jail. Cute, huh?

Want us to share your story?

Whether you have only just dipped your toe or are an expert on China’s app or game markets, we want to hear about it. Leave a comment below or drop us a line at and let us know your story.

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