Adobe Melrose – The Place To Sell Your Apps

This post is about Adobe Melrose – the new Lab project from Adobe, and my first contact with it. I hope to be able to continuously update this article so you can get perfect view of what is going on when you decide to use Melrose. Lets begin with public static const MELROSE: 🙂

Melrose (codename) enables developers and publishers to distribute and make money with Adobe® AIR® applications through application stores. Melrose provides a repository that distributes applications to multiple application stores so that publishers can reach millions of users. Intel AppUp Center and the Adobe AIR Marketplace are the first two storefronts available in Melrose. Melrose also provides analytics that let publishers measure success of their applications.

onBoard

At first, I decided to publish my onBoard project. The AIR version was already finished and working so it was not much to do before publishing.

September 18, 2010: Melrose Labs webpage directed me to Developer Marketplace, where the registration was required. There is a lot of contact, business and other information required. After few minutes I managed to fill everything correctly and the account was created.

In Melrose Developer Market in download section I signed for free certificate for my AIR apps and soon after I have received a copy of an email being sent from Adobe to Adobe with subject “Signing Certificate for Melrose”

Signing Certificate
Get a free signing certificate: During debugging it is ok to have your app self-signed but for release mode, it will need to be signed by a trusted authority. If you do not have a trusted certificate, Adobe will provide you with one.

September 20, 2010: I have received an e-mail from Adobe The Melrose Team containing free coupon code for my certificate.

There’s a catch! By accepting the complimentary certificate, you agree to publish your signed AIR application to Melrose within 30 days after receiving the certificate.

September 21, 2010: In order to obtain certificate I was directed to PGP TrustCenter, where I clicked “Buy For Individual Developer” button. Following the Adobe e-mail instruction I have chosen 1 year certificate at the price $199.00. Next some contact information filled and in final step I applied coupon code (the one from Adobe) insted of paymen. Nice and smooth, registration for certificate successfull. That turnet to be, of course, not enough to get the certificate…

In a few seconds I have received an e-mail from trustcenter.de containing all the necessary info to finish my certificate request:

To check the statements in your request we need the following documents (if not already presented):
1. A written request confirmation (see attachment), signed by the applicant.
2. A copy of a well-recognized form of government-issued photographic identification with signature, such as a passport or drivers licence of the applicant.
Please fax or send these documents to…

… + another e-mail containing PIN (password) for my certificate.

So I filled my name and signature on the attached document, and faxed the paper with my ID (driving license) on the empty footer part of the paper. After few hours, new e-mail arrived, now with attached certificate file (.p12) and alternative download link.

The download link for the private key and certificate will be available 60 days only, in case of a later loss of private key a new certificate has to be requested and paid for.

Certificate activation was smooth (do not forget to use your PIN)

You need to double click the file in order to import the certificate. Please also enter this PIN when you will be asked to “Type the password for the private key” using the Certificate Import Wizard.

September 23, 2010: Finally, some time for programming final application modification. Before you can upload an AIR application into Developer Marketplace, you have to download licensing class.

Licensing SWC: To enable the sale of your AIR app, you need to add the licensing SWC to your application. The licensing SWC manages purchases and trials for your app and can be found in the SDK.

Add downloaded .swc file into your project library path (flash builder) and add a few lines of code into your main application init handler. Read What is MY_UNIQUE_32_HEX_NUM?

import com.adobe.licensing.LicenseManager;

private static const MY_UNIQUE_32_HEX_NUM:String = "YOUR-UNIQUE-HEX";
private static var UPDATE_MODE:Boolean = true;
private static var DEBUG_MODE:Boolean = false;

// <s:WindowedApplication applicationComplete="init()">
public function init():void
{
    var licenseManager:LicenseManager = new LicenseManager();
    licenseManager.checkLicense(this, MY_UNIQUE_32_HEX_NUM, UPDATE_MODE, DEBUG_MODE);
    ...
    // here continues the original code

That was all what was necessary updates for my application, so I have released a new AIR file with my new valid certificate and was ready to publish it to Developer Marketplace. Upload was smooth, but a lot of additional content was required in order to make final submission. E.g.: descriptions, pricing settings, icons, marketplace image, screenshot … done and submited

I have chosen the free licensing variant for my app.

September 24, 2010: I have received “status APPROVED” for my application by e-mail from The Melrose Team. The approval process has taken about 8 hours from my submission. That is very fast. Now I wonder where/when my application appears, because I can not find my app on Adobe AIR Marketplace for now (September 24, 2010).

I have also discovered there is a different button to submit my application to Intel AppUp, under Distribution tab for my application. Clicked. We will see next days.

September 25, 2010: I am eager to know where/when my application will appear, sending question to melrose support using support tab in Melrose application.

Hello, it seems like my application onBoard has been successfuly approved for marketplace. When or where will my application appear?
Jozef Chutka

September 27, 2010: Two kindly and personal responses (they know my blog, and refer to this article 🙂 ) from support, instructs me to resubmit my application into AppUp with correct content rating. I do so, however the Intel Rating Guidelines redirects me to password protected webpage on intel.com, but I do not have an account there.

September 28, 2010: What a nice surprise today morning! onBoard application finally appears on Adobe AIR Marketplace under “Most Recent” tab, however still not available via Marketplace search form. Now I am waiting for AppUp team to approve and publish my application.

A short sum up of my application live cycle: submitted + 8 hours: approved + 4 days: available for public downloads.

I have fixed some minor bugs in my application and resubmitted the new version (tip or myself upload button appears in home section upper left corner).

October 2, 2010: Just after four long days after resubmitting newer version I have received an e-mail from Melrose Team saying:

Thank you for submitting onBoard (version 2.06). We have reviewed your application but cannot accept it because of the following concerns…

… now thats cool, based on my application nature, how am I supposed to moderate it all? Does someone moderate twitter content and applications, does someone moderate facebook content or rss readers software? How can I moderate human generated content (drawn in this case)? This makes no sense to me, together with the previous approval (September 24), how does Melrose approval process works when it once approves and once not the same thing?

It has been 5 days now, since I submitted the app into AppUp with correct rating, and I still have no response from Intel 🙁 + Intel Rating Guidelines page still password protected…

October 23, 2010: A few things suddenly changed, Adobe Melrose changed its application desing. And it seems like AppUp started to accept AIR applications just by these days, validation pending for onBoard.

October 25, 2010: Adobe Melrose went public, changing its name to Adobe InMarket.

October 27, 2010: First echo from Intel AppUp, I have just received an e-mail saying:

Congratulations, your application onBoard (version 2.08) has been approved for Intel AppUp(SM)! Your application is now available for download or sale.
To manage your application, please go to: http://www.adobe.com/go/inmarketportal

… it would be great, but I am still unable to find it on AppUp.

November 4, 2010: Great news, onBoard application really is available on AppUp market, however not on appup.com (event after week). Sadly, I am unable to install AppUp Market application on my windows XP. Vetting process on AppUp now takes 1-2 days for your application updates.

More Stuff

I made a few tweets about this Melrose / AppUp stuff, and suddenly I got replied from @bobduffy. This guy is technology evangelist in Intel, and I think there is a potential he can respont to some of our AppUp questions.

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