The Amazon Appstore hasn't exactly grown to rival Google Play in size or overall quality, but there's still some cool stuff over there. And if you can get it for free? That's a pretty good deal. Amazon is offering $5 to spend on apps and all you have to do is download something.


Starting on December 24th and running through the 28th, anyone who downloads an app or game using the latest version of the Amazon Appstore client will get a $5 credit to spend on Appstore content. It doesn't matter if you've had the Appstore installed before or not – just get the new version and you're good to go. The app you download to trigger the deal can be free – including the free app of the day, which Amazon is going to be pushing hard this week with big names like Angry Birds Star Wars II and Quell Memento.

The free Amazon money is only for use in the Appstore. You can use it to get paid apps and games, or to make in-app purchases.

[BusinessWire, Amazon]

Ryan Whitwam
Ryan is a tech/science writer, skeptic, lover of all things electronic, and Android fan. In his spare time he reads golden-age sci-fi and sleeps, but rarely at the same time. His wife tolerates him as few would.

He's the author of a sci-fi novel called The Crooked City, which is available on Amazon and Google Play.

  • Cherokee4life

    holy crap... that's a nice Christmas Present

  • https://twitter.com/#!/doomstang Doomstang

    Sounds good, I just re-installed the Amazon AppStore (which is exactly what they want)

  • robnelle

    It is worth noting that there is a limit of one $5 promotional credit per customer and account.

    Also, the $5 promotional credit expires on March 31, 2014 at 11:59 PM (PST)

    From the terms and conditions (fine print)


    • vwbeetlvr

      Dang I thought I could download 200,000 apps for 1 meeelion dolllllars!

  • Brad

    not worth it...

    • Eric Jones

      I agree. I'd much rather just spend $5 of my own money on the Play store, and not have to deal with Amazon's crAPPy store.

      • Brad

        I rebought my FAOTD apps (all 2 that were worthwhile) so I could be done with amazon's store... Found out the google play ones are more up to date. Go figure.

      • DirkBelig

        I got Soundhound Infinity and TuneIn Radio Pro from FAOTD and that's $13 worth right there alone. Y'all can be elitist haters; I'll take the money.

        • Eric Jones

          If I wanted those apps, I'd still rather just pay for them. Amazon's FAOTD is usually really crappy. It's not like I can get either of those apps for cheap right now. I would have to check it daily, wading through the crap apps to get one good one every six months. The Amazon app store app may be better now, but it used to load horribly, drain your battery ridiculously, and get confused by apps installed by the Google play store, if they were also in your Amazon library. The apps are also almost always a few versions behind the Play store as well. There are also features of Google play services that won't work with Amazon apps, unless they are completely rewritten. It would take a lot of really good reasons to convince me to try Amazon's app store again. Significantly more than $13.

          That's cool if you like it though. I'm not hating on anything, it's just not for me.

          • DirkBelig

            OK, Richie Rich, but some of us don't have $7 to toss on some apps as easily as you do and why should I spend to spite Amazon if I don't have to?

            I've got nearly 500 FOATD apps that were acquired by looping past Amazon on my computer and checking out what the app is and if it looks interesting, checking out the reviews (made difficult by the cranks who 1-star anything that makes their tinfoil permissions hat tighten) and then clicking to add it to my account. I rarely fire up the actually Appstore app unless it's to install something or check for updates.

            Yeah, the way it sees the other apps is dumb, but wah, I'm saving money. I'm not rich, but even if I was, free is a good price.

          • Eric Jones

            Awesome, I'm glad that you like it. I don't, and I'd rather spend $7 on an app I like, which benefits the developer, than on Starbucks, etc.

          • squiddy20

            Wow. The guy outright says it's not for him and that he's "not hating", and you still give him crap. All your friends must love you.

          • DirkBelig

            They do, because I give them tips to stretch their dollars as opposed to preening how rich I am. Some people think they have to brag about how much they spend. I'm impressed with how little they spend. I just picked up a PC game bundle for $1.19 from Amazon. I'm sure Eric would gladly have paid $15 for it because he's rich.

          • Freak4Dell

            It has nothing to do with being rich. It's about convenience, which is often worth paying for. The Amazon app store is anything but convenient. It's a resource hog that can't be uninstalled if you want to keep using the apps you got from there. The apps are often outdated, because Amazon has to approve any updates that developers put up. I'd rather pay a few bucks and have the latest version of the app from Play.

          • DirkBelig

            You don't need to run it 24/7. (Perhaps you can Google how to close apps?) After Amazon screwed over Shifty Jelly with their Pocket Casts FAOTD, they stopped supporting it, but I've found the apps I've used from there are current.

            Whatever. Spend all your money at Play to show Amazon who's boss. It's your money. Throw yourselves a parade every day about how cool you are for all I care.

          • Freak4Dell

            Its processes run in the background all the time. Even if you force stop it, it will relaunch any time you launch an app downloaded from there.

            Seems like the real issue here is that you're jealous that some of us have a couple extra bucks to spend on apps every now and then. Unfortunately, there's no free app of the day for that.

          • DirkBelig

            You know what they say about fools and their money, right? Only insecure rich dorks feel the need to flaunt their wealth and then sneer, "U jelly?" when called out on their conspicuous consumption. What a bunch of maroons.

          • Freak4Dell

            Nah, we're rich, remember? We're a bunch of royal purples.

          • squiddy20

            That, right there at the end, I saw what you did there :P

          • squiddy20

            "Only insecure rich dorks feel the need to flaunt their wealth and then sneer,"U jelly?""
            Meanwhile, it seems to me you're doing the same thing, only with how cheap/poor you are. After all, you did just brag to me about how you "just picked up a PC game bundle for $1.19 from Amazon". Hypocrite much?

          • BigBernard

            Do you mean like the way you throw around the word "fanboy" all the time?

          • squiddy20

            1. the term "fanboy" is an accurate descriptor (not necessarily an insult) of some people. Just like "nerd" has become less of an insult these days.
            2. Maybe it's just me, but I wouldn't consider the term as "childish name calling", for the reason above.

          • RichieRich

            U jelly?

          • squiddy20

            Last I saw, the Amazon Appstore app was a constantly running process in the background that starts at boot. So while you don't physically need to open the app, it is indeed running "24/7", taking resources away from other things your smartphone could be doing. And as other commenters have pointed out, with some apps, loss of mobile data connectivity (whether that's due to Airplane mode or just no data in a given area) can mean the inability to use a given app, because they require a "check in" with Amazon's servers every time the app is opened, even though the app itself (say from the Play Store) might not require a data connection at all to function properly.

            Then, as Freak4 Dell pointed out, the apps are often outdated compared to their counterparts on the Play Store. Case in point: Words with Friends was apparently just updated in the Play Store to v6.8.1. The Amazon Appstore version? Still on 6.7.1. That Soundhound Infinity app you were talking about earlier? On the Appstore it's at 5.4.4, but on the Play Store it's at 5.7.0. That's a whole lot of updates you still don't have.

          • Notorious

            Wow. The Play store services are FAR more intrusive than the appstore the Bloatware that you can not uninstall from your phone pales in comparison to the appstore app. btw there is NO shutting down the many services/apps that google forces you to use. I too would prefer to only have to use the play store and that's because I really do not have a choice. I am just saying that I love what amazon appstore offers. its called an alternative. also it is very rare for me to run into version differences they do exist but is never a big deal. like IPCAM Viewer add a new camera woopie....
            I just want to toss out alternatives ( especially trustworthy ones ) are a GOOD thing.

          • squiddy20

            1. But you can disable them as long as you're running Android 4.0 or above. You can also disable the Play Store app and it won't disable all the apps you've gotten from there, unlike the Amazon Appstore app. Your phone/tablet might not work as well, but it can be done.

            2. There IS a way to shut down the "many services/apps that google forces you to use". A) If you bother with rooting your phone, there are plenty of alternative services/libs that can be swapped out. http://www.xda-developers.com/android/remove-the-google-specific-files-with-noanalytics-remix-a-modification-of-the-freecygn-project/ Your UX might not be as good, but it's there. B) No one is forcing you to use Google's apps. Don't want to use Maps, Drive, the Dialer, or Talk/Hangouts? Then don't download/use them. There's plenty of alternatives (yes even the dialer), and even more options if you root.

          • squiddy20

            Yes, because $15 automatically makes you "rich". If that were the case, virtually everyone in the US would be living like kings (except you apparently). Also, $15 for a few mobile apps, which you will probably use more than, say, a $40 game for that shiny new XBox One or PS4, is a pretty good bargain in my book.

            That said, I'm not saying saving money is a bad thing. I personally am not one to go out and spend my entire paycheck (or even a quarter of it) the minute I get it. But to call people with $15 to put towards a few apps, to support a developer, who can then in turn use that money to support their self/themselves, "rich", is just ridiculous. Other people have to make a living too. It's not just about you and your income level (or apparent lack thereof).

          • Matthew

            It takes all of 5 seconds to check FAOTD. I agree with you as I won't buy apps. I've got lots if games, even SwiftKey. Their service is unmatchable. Most of these people say they haven't used it in a long time. If u have a problem, they resolve it. Google has zero service. An app will show as downloaded when u go to Google play but that's not their fault. Shows its the same app. I guess people would turn down $5 bills cut that's too small an amount. People freak over a fifty cent grocery coupon

      • Matthew

        I have no problems... They have great customer service.. And free apps rock. The app may take a few days to update big deal. Blame the developers who don't submit the updates. Amazon reviews take days...

    • Rodrigo Bittencourt

      but is Freeeeeee

      • Brad

        Plenty of things that suck are free... that's why they're free ;)

  • SimonPieman

    Yay? $5 to spend on useless out of date versions of apps. No thanks. This is only a total cretin would buy a Kindle Fire....

    • Matthew

      They update.. Just takes longer. If developer delays, it gets delayed. Amazon's approval doesn't take long. My major apps usually update a couple days after Play Store. If you don't want free, don't get it. You could use it to test an app thenbut it ion Google. I don't pay for apps so works 4me

  • Mark S

    Way back in the day when amazon came out with their app store I bought a few apps, but mainly used it for the free app of the day....After using it for a few months I decided to re-buy the apps in the android market. I got sick of slow updates and weird licensing connection problems (certain apps wouldn't work in airplane mode because they couldn't verify the license). I still occasionally will look at the free app of the day, don't have the amazon app store installed on either my phone or tablet.
    I'll probably download an app, get my $5 and never use it.

    • danishdhanshe

      The coupon expires on March 31 maybe

  • matthew

    What i can buy there interesting for 5$?

    • Aleksey_US

      Not sure what you can buy... but you can definitely sell your soul, Amazon Store is the Devil I tells ya!

    • danishdhanshe

      Gangstar Vegas, modern combat 4, nova 3, asphalt 7 and many more games and apps

    • Matthew

      Why don't you log on & see what they have.

  • philnolan3d

    How do you know if you got the credit or not. I think I accidentally
    bought an app trying to find out, thanks to that horrible one click

    • monkeycrackers2

      I had trouble figuring out where to check my balance too; didn't show in my account or anything. But when I went to the Amazon.com app store, and on an app's page, on the right hand side, below the "Buy Now with 1-Click", there is a "Redeem Code & View Balance" that shows Gift Card Balance and Amazon App Store Balance. Clicked the "Buy Now" and though there was no payment choice, it did know to use the App Store Balance, thankfully.

  • Illuminant

    Is it US only? Two weeks ago amazon offered $3 credit and I bought an app just to find out that it is not ART compatible, therefore the free credit was ruined. Two hours ago I downloaded two apps, and now waiting for $5 just to buy something meaningful like Swiftkey - BUT haven't received the promotion email - yet. Any ideas?

    • barefootbandit8

      Maybe because the promotion doesn't start till the 24th?

      • Illuminant

        Yeah. That could be it. Time-zones are different, 4 hours of 24th has already passed here..

      • SxperiaS

        Different time zones.... 24th already

    • Matthew

      If you wanna know call or email them. Get the right answer vs some random number resins opinion. Go to the source

  • QuestionaboutAmazonpromotion

    Can this be spent on MP3s?

    • Matthew

      Don't think so. Music isn't on the Appstore

  • SxperiaS

    US only it seems?

  • Razed

    If they had an android instant streaming client I'd give amazon more attention.

  • FrillArtist

    Eh, The money is still useless. I thought you could spend the $5 anywhere in Amazon like say Amazon MP3, the Amazon website etc. I deleted the Amazon Appstore off my phone for a reason and $5 and maybe even $20 to spend there still won't bring me back until they fix the fundamental issues underneath the whole concept.

    • Matthew

      It's mainly designed for Kindle so it's justa bbonus if it's avail on your phone. It's not perfect but I download free apps all the time. I

  • Олег Цой

    Hmmm, what did I get as Faotd and actually used it…… Docs 2 go key still use. Screebl Pro extensively till 4.3. Flightboard keep on the phone. Genius Scan, Convertr till found better ap. HandyMate Pro used occasionally. Jump Desktop, Percent Calc Pro, PrinterShare, very rarely. OfficeSuite Pro, never. Thumb kb but it wasnt updated in Appstore. Wp clock full on Nook tablet not on Nexus. More I can't care to remember.

  • http://nrajesh.com Rajesh

    There's a lot of Amazon App store bashers out here. I think it's a pretty neat way to get to try out apps (FAOTD concept).

    The difference in opinion could be due to the fundamental way in which people use apps. While I prefer sticking on to a very good application and prefer to purchase it if needed, I don't like to think the same way about games.

    For folks like me who just play a good game for a few days and then uninstall then this app store does come handy, especially when majority of the free apps are games.

    With this Christmas offer Amazon is giving a chance for us to get an app or game for $5,I don't get why people crib. If you feel AAS does not maintain recent app versions, you can probably use this offer to try an app which you were skeptical to purchase.

    If you do really like it, probably spend a real $5 in Google Play Store and buy the devs a cup of tea :) To me it seems like a win-win!

    • Matthew

      Their test drive feature where u can try the app without downloading to your device or computer is pretty nice. It has its faults : updates, returns lack of saving for switching phones, not posting developer contacts etc. But it's designed mainly for Kindle but they've opened it to all. I wish every app would have test drive.

      • http://nrajesh.com Rajesh

        You can test drive? Didn't know - you mean there is a web interface or is this directly on phone. Any pointers?

    • Matthew

      They get uodated
      . Just slower as developers need to submit & it needs to get approved. I rather have Amazon or Apple check than getting Google play mall are or fakes

    • Brad

      The free apps of the day have been nothing but freemium games... I uninstalled and got the proper versions of the apps from the actual play store. Much better experience.

      • http://nrajesh.com Rajesh

        I think I have not seen that many freemium ones. I guess I know what you are trying to intend though - that the better titles are freemium one's. But my point is that the smaller known titles (which I may never ever purchase) come for free and they are usually fully free.

  • danishdhanshe

    Some help needed!
    I am getting a weird error and wanted to know if anyone else is having the same problem
    And can anyone please help me fix it

    • danishdhanshe


      • Guest

        I would contact Amazon...

        • HarrytheHare

          I was having that error when trying to use my $5 credit, logged on to Amazon via computer, and bought the apps I wanted, it applied my $5 credit instantly. AWESOME!

    • Steez

      I'm having the same error on the same game. Any luck?

  • philnolan3d

    Watch out. I downloaded a free app and assumed I was given the credit but had no way of knowing. So I clicked the price of an app to see if it would show me on the checkout page. Of course the Appstore has no checkout page, they just went ahead and charged me for the app I clicked. I complained to customer support and they added the credit to my account. Which is nice but does not help my already low bank account.

    • Pushkar Kurhekar

      Well, I just tried downloading a free app (Minion Rush to be precise) and after pressing Get app, it gave me a small window saying the credit was added, followed by an email which came around a minute later. Sad to hear you didn't get anything of the sort.

      Now I'm wondering what app to install. Any suggestions?

      • wunterslaush

        How bout that Minuum keyboard? The Amazon store has the latest version even.

      • philnolan3d

        They should say that in the article so it doesn't happen to others. tech suppiort told me I didn't get it due to a glitch. It may happen again.

        • devil

          A glitch my ass. It was a misprint on purpose and not everyone is going to complain so they can bank in as much as they can amd onky have to reinstate the money to the people that complain. Which in all fairness, have ever right to.

      • irman

        I received the email, but when I checked my account it still said that my balance is 0

      • TayyabKhalid

        MC4!!!! FOR 1 DOLLAR

  • Timothy Roberts

    I am by no means a huge fan of the Amazon app store,...but hey, 5 bucks is 5 bucks! Thank you Amazon!

  • Hctr Dvd

    I would like to know if this $5 apply to mp3, movies and books too, or only for apps and games. Thanks.

    • Matthew

      Appstore is apps & games. Others are not part of it

  • steff

    US only, sadly

  • Ryan Callihan

    A pretty good time for this promotion, I'd say. Gangstas Vegas is on sale for 0.99 there. Gotta love free money from Amazon!

  • John

    Doesn't work for purchases thru a Kindle.....

  • Damon Rose

    What..US only? CHEAP!

    • Dilesh Perera

      yes but it works if u purchase app using web. just use web page http://www.amazon.com and buy the app u wants. then Open the Amazon Appstore on your device, then go to Menu → My Apps → Cloud → Refresh to see your newly purchased app to download and install. did worked for me

  • vaibhav singhavi

    very nice of amazon, wanted rayman jungle but didn't wanted to pay 2,99 but got this and diner dash paid version n wedding dash for total of 5 $$

  • mgamerz

    Meh, I really hate the appstore app (it's as bad as facebook app in my opinion, slow and stuff), plus apps are never updated in a timely manner. I feel like google play store is much more 1-to-1 with developers.

    • Matthew

      Free is free for us cheapos. It's saved me a lot of money with daily free apps & occasional promotions. It's not Google Play, but they have great customer service

  • Samer Gallab

    This message appears to me:

    We are sorry...
    We could not process your order because of geographical restrictions on the product which you were attempting to purchase. Please refer to the terms of use for this product to determine the geographical restrictions.

    We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you.
    Plz help :(

    • Matthew

      R u outside the US.. Have you read the terms of use or called them. You may be in a country where it's not available

      • Samer Gallab

        Thanks Mathew for your response. Actually, I live in Egypt, but I've heard many people outside USA, such as Philippines & India, have had it works for them. So, I hope it works for me too, but most probably it won't. :)

  • eilegz

    got switfkey... nice stuff amazon

  • http://www.jucktion.com/tech Niroj Manandhar

    This is just awesome!!, can't beat free in the Holiday season. To all the haters, you can keep hating it while I'll be using it. :D

  • Veee

    Is this only available in the US? It hasn't been working here in Canada.

  • Raymond Berger

    I downloaded Cookie Tapper on my Moto X and got this screen :)

  • kekkojoker90

    In italy i got 1 euro for an mp3 -.-

  • Klappa

    Download a free app to get the discount.

  • Winston Smith

    It's a scam. I installed the amazon App Store and downloaded two free Android apps. Then it tried to charge my credit card for the 99 cents app I tried to install. The amazon "customer service" staff acted like he had no clue about the promotion, even when I gave him the full link to the amazon.com page explaining it.

    If you want to take your chances, and try to get the $5, go ahead, but if you don't want a hassle, just stick with Google Play.

  • Taz Talks

    The question is, where can you check your balance? I've received the email, but still cannot verify a credit anywhere.

    • monkeycrackers2

      Posted this to another reply: I had trouble figuring out where to check my balance too; didn't show in my account or anything. But when I went to the Amazon.com
      app store, and on an app's page, on the right hand side, below the "Buy
      Now with 1-Click", there is a "Redeem Code & View Balance" that
      shows Gift Card Balance and Amazon App Store Balance. Clicked the "Buy
      Now" and though there was no payment choice, it did know to use the App
      Store Balance, thankfully.

      • Taz Talks

        there it is! 8)

  • Riko Gonzalez


  • 0sec

    Its over