Android SDK updates: Bigger Screens, Faster Payments, Full Offline Support

Today we are launching version 9.1 of our Android in-app purchasing SDK. Now you can monetize your applications even when the users are offline with the use of carrier billing. With the previous SDK versions, internet connection was necessary for making the very first payment. This limitation no longer applies - users can have a full offline payment experience.

Full payment data can be added to the application archive as one big XML file and when the connection is not available, all necessary info will be taken from this local data - including prices, shortcode and keywords for the background SMS billing. When the device is online, payment data is synchronized with Fortumo servers to ensure that it’s always up-to-date.

What else is there new in the new and shiny SDK? These areas that have undergone major upgrades:

  • High-definition resolution support: Android is not just for smartphones - phablets, tablets and smart TV-s are also increasingly becoming popular. To make sure the payment window will match the quality of your app - even if it’s running on a 50-inch screen - we have upgraded the graphics of our payment dialogues for bigger resolutions.
  • Better tablet optimization: We have improved tablet device detection which takes into account both screen sizes and SIM-card presence on the device. For tablets without SIM cards, we have improved the payment flow to make sure it works as seamlessly as possible.
  • Performance improvements: We have optimized the way purchased items and credits are delivered to the user and this has allowed us to make payment dialogues faster, while reducing performance impact to the end-user device.
  • Smaller SDK: Our Android SDK is now at 500KB in size, down from 850KB which it was previously. The smaller your app, the more likely that a user will download it, so every little bit helps.
  • Revised translations: We went over all the texts and made sure they are always as clear for a user as possible - in all 34 languages.

But are you taking full advantage of the existing features? Here are two cool tips & tricks to take full advantage of our payment SDK.

  • Custom product icon: you can set a custom image (like the one on the right) to be displayed in the payment window. This makes payment flow look even more native for your application, and has proven a significant effect on conversion rates.
  • Non-consumable items: if you’re selling products that can be only purchased once, such as new level packs or full game versions, Fortumo will take care of managing these items for you. You only need to set a unique name for each unique item when starting the payment - afterwards, a user will not be allowed to make a payment for the same item twice. The purchase data is saved both locally on the device and on the Fortumo servers, and you can retrieve the purchase status for a non-consumable item, or the full user purchase history, at any moment when you need it.

You can download the latest version of the SDK from your Fortumo Dashboard. Full technical documentation can be found in our Developer’s Portal and an overview of the previous major update can be found  here.

If you are not yet using Fortumo for in-app purchasing on Android, click here to sign up.