Publishing Android Add-ons

To publish an Android add-on, it must be submitted to the Google Play Store as an Android app (if it is not already there). After that, the add-on must pass a style review. This review ensures that your Android add-on is designed well, follows the UX Style Guide, and does not include or produce any spam, malware, or unacceptable content.

Development checklist

Before beginning publishing, verify that your add-on is functioning well. Use the following checklist to determine if you are ready to publish. Make sure that:

  • The add-on is fully functional — it can't be a “work in progress”.
  • The add-on does not duplicate functionality already present in the Google editor apps that launch the add-on — add-ons must extend what the editor apps do, not replicate it.
  • The design adheres to the UX style guidelines.
  • The add-on has error-handling code and shows appropriate error messages to the user when necessary.
  • The add-on makes good use of runtime permissions when possible and follows runtime permission best practices.
  • The add-on's menus are correctly defined in its AndroidManifest.xml file, with each menu item launching the correct Activity.
  • The add-on has been tested throughly, including edge cases.
  • If you are adapting an existing app to act as an Android add-on, the app must function properly if the Android add-on aspects are unavailable (for example, due to the app not being reviewed yet). The user experience should never suffer if the Android add-on functions are disabled for any reason.

If you have not submitted the add-on to the Google Play Store yet, you also need (at minimum) the following assets to complete the add-on's store listing:

  • At least two screenshots of your app (preferably from phones and tablets; using tablet screenshots requires at least one from a 7-inch tablet and one from a 10-inch tablet).
  • A hi-res icon for you app (512 x 512, 32-bit PNG with alpha).
  • A feature graphic (1024 w x 500 h, JPG or 24-bit PNG, no alpha).
  • A short description of the add-on (80 characters max).
  • A full description of the add-on (4000 characters max).

You may also want to enrich the add-on listing with additional screenshots, a promo graphic and a promo video. You may also wish to prepare an end-user license agreement (EULA) and a privacy policy document.

Submit to the Google Play Store

All Android add-ons must have an entry in the Google Play Store. To submit an app for the first time, first review the Get started with publishing documentation.

The Google Play Launch checklist provides detailed list of steps to take prior to launching your app, including how to prepare your add-on for release. Review these documents carefully and follow their instructions to get your app into the Google Play Store.

While following these instructions, keep these points in mind:

  1. Remember to set your add-on as the system debug app while testing. This allows your add-on to appear in the Docs and/or Sheets editor app menus on your test device prior to passing the Android add-on review. Setting the add-on as the debug app enables all debug and release builds of that add-on.
  2. Be sure to test the release build prior to uploading to the Google Play Store. Make sure your add-on's OAuth credentials are established for the release build and function correctly — an add-on's debug and release builds will need separate OAuth credentials.
  3. The Android add-on review team needs access to your add-on to conduct its review. The add-on either needs to be published publicly, or you need to create a Closed beta with Google+ community or Google Group beta test and invite the review team (mobile-addon-reviews@googlegroups.com) to participate.

You can use the Google Play Console to manage Android apps you've developed and submitted to the Google Play Store.

Android add-on review

All Android add-ons require a style review prior to being enabled, to ensure add-on quality and prevent spam and other unacceptable content. Keep in mind the following:

  • Reviews are conducted by members of our review team and can take several days to complete. Be sure to allow for this when determining your publication schedule.
  • You can ensure a timely review process by quickly responding any questions or recommendations the review team makes.
  • Once your add-on passes review, you can publish the app as an Android add-on. If you decide to update your add-on later, it does not need to be reviewed again.

Once your add-on is available in the Google Play Store, you need to request a review. Follow these steps:

  1. Make sure the reviewers have access to the Android add-on version of your app. This means the app needs to be available publicly in the Google Play Store, or you must create a beta test and add the review team to it.
  2. Using the account that owns the Google Play Store project, open the Apps Script editor (it doesn't matter if you open an existing project or create a new one).
  3. In the editor, select Publish > Manage Android add-ons to open the Android add-on management dialog.
  4. In the dialog, under Enable Android add-on select the Android package name of the add-on, and click Submit. This starts the review process. If you do not see your add-on listed, this indicates either that you have not submitted the add-on to the Google Play Store yet or the account you are using is not the owner of the add-on in the Google Play Store.
  5. You will be contacted once the initial review is finished. The review team may ask you to update your add-on to better match the style guidelines or make other improvements.
  6. Make the requested changes and follow the instructions the review team provides to resubmit the add-on. While the review is underway, you can check the status of the review by opening the Android add-on managment dialog in the Apps Script editor.
  7. Once the review team enables your add-on, it should be ready for public use. Review your Google Play Store settings at this point to make the add-on publically available. If the add-on is currently in beta, you must upload the final APK to the production channel. As always, exercise caution when issuing new production APKs and make sure the new version does not cause problems for existing users.

Updating your Android add-on

If there are changes you wish to make to your Android add-on, determine if the changes require updating the Android APK, and if they require updating any Apps Script projects your add-on calls.

If the changes require updating the Android APK, make the appropriate changes to your Android project and the follow the updating instructions to get the new version into the Google Play Store.

If the changes you wish to make affect an Apps Script your Android add-on calls with the Execution API, do the following:

  1. Make the appropriate changes to the Apps Script project.
  2. Test the changes throughly to ensure they work as intended for the Android add-on.
  3. In the Apps Script editor, select Publish > Deploy as API executable
  4. Create a new version with a label, and then click Deploy.

Unpublishing your Android add-on

You can remove your add-on from the Google Play Store by following these Unpublish an app instructions. This prevents new users from finding your add-on, but existing users can still use the app and receive updates.

You can undeploy an Apps Script project that your Android add-on is calling by selecting Publish > Deploy as API executable in the Apps Script editor, then clicking Disable. This prevents any application from calling the methods in the Apps Script project, which may break your add-on for existing users. The deployment dialog also allows you to re-deploy a project that you have previously disabled.

Send feedback about...

Apps Script
Apps Script