The process of submitting an Android App to the Play Store consists of two steps: creating the app, and rolling it out to production (releasing to the store). It is also possible to simply update an app that is already published to the store.
Creating the app
The app creation and publishing happens on the Play Console. All applications and their releases can be managed on the console. If you don't have a Google Play account yet, you will need to set up a new one.
To create a new application, select All applications from the menu on the left and click Create Application.
Choose a default language and the app title and click to create your app.
Using the menu on the left you can configure your app. The first step is to set the metadata of the app. Navigate to Store listing, under the section Store presence on
the menu. No new release is needed to update those fields in the future.
The following items describe how to fill in the fields, divided by section:
- Title: The title of the app as it should be displayed in the Google Play store. Max 50 characters, including spaces.
- Short description: A small promo text, describing the app in one sentence. Example: "The mobile app for Conference Compass events". Max 80 characters, including spaces.
- Full description: A description of your app, detailing features and functionality. Don't only describe the events, but also the functionality of the app.
Refer to the Artwork Guide to create your images.
- Screenshots: You need to upload at least 2 screenshots for the phone format. The screenshots must be JPG or 24-bit PNG without transparency. Min length for any side: 320px. Max length for any side: 3840px.
- Hi-res icon: The icon of the app must be in 32-bit PNG format without transparency and have the dimensions 512 x 512 px. Rounded corners will be applied by Google Play.
- Feature Graphic: An image that represents the app. Should be JPG or 24-bit PNG without transparency, and have the dimensions 1024px x 500px (width x height).
- Promo Graphic: An image that represents the app. Should be JPG or 24-bit PNG without transparency, and have the dimensions 180px x 120px (width x height).
- Application type: Choose Applications.
- Category: Choose the category that best describes your app. You can refer to the Google Play list of categories.
- Website: A URL with support information for your app. We recommend you to add the URL of either your event website or your company website.
- Email: An email that can be used to contact you or your organization regarding the app. It will be publicly displayed with your app.
The next step is to upload the .apk file, creating a new release. Navigate to App Releases under the section Release Management on the menu. In the top-right corner, click Manage Production.
Click Create release.
You will be able to upload the .apk file. Include a text explaining what is new in this release, such as new features and bug fixes, and click Review. It won't be possible yet to start the rollout to production, because further steps need to be completed.
Now that the .apk was uploaded, define the app rating by clicking Store presence > Content Rating on the menu. Enter your email and answer the questionnaire about the app. The rating will be calculated.
If you create a new app or publish an update to an existing app, you will be required to fill in the 'Google Play Families policy'. You can learn about the policy more in this article.
You'll fill information about the app content in different steps:
In Ads, select No, my app does not contain ads:
Target audience and content:
The next step is to define how the app is going to be distributed. Navigate to Pricing & Distribution from the menu on the left, below the section Store presence. Select Managed Google Play and define the next fields as it follows:
- This application is: Free
- App Availability: Publish
- Countries: Select the countries that the app should be available. You can also select all at once.
- Primarily Child-Directed: No
- Contain ads: No
Check Content guidelines and US export laws checkboxes under the section Consent and save the changes.
Rollout to production
To make the new release available on the store, you need to rollout all the changes to production. Navigate to App Releases under the section Release Management on the menu. Look for the message that states that you have a release that hasn't been rolled out yet and click Edit release. You can now review the release and start its rollout to production.
Update an app
If you want to submit a new release for an app that it is already published, the same release process as on the creation of the app applies. Navigate to App Releases under the section Release Management on the menu. In the top-right corner, click Manage Production and then on Create release. After you upload the .apk file you can click Review. If all the other information is already filled in, you will be able to rollout to production.