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Budding Android developers from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam can apply to take part in Google Play's Indie Games Accelerator Program, a program designed to help independent developers grow their business, gain valuable development skills, and learn about leading and managing their teams. Using workshops, mentorships with skilled mobile developers, and help with connections to investors/publishers, the program hopes to help devs reach their full potential and find success in a challenging market.

With its expansion into South Asia, the Indie Games Accelerator offers a variety of benefits for chosen applicants, including training bootcamps at Google Asia's HQ in Singapore (all expenses paid), mentorships with successful mobile developers (Noah Falstein, Rami Ismail, Matt Hall, Mark Skaggs), opportunities to be showcased on Google Play, and lots of other handy things.

"Developers selected for the program will attend 2 all expense paid bootcamps in Singapore where they will attend presentations and workshops on different aspects of game development, user growth, game analytics, monetization, and leadership. They will also be paired with top gaming experts from the industry and Google, who will mentor and coach them over 2 months leading up to their graduation. We also plan to create opportunities to connect program participants with global game developers and publishers that are looking to invest in the regions," says Vineet Tanwar of Google Play.

What has got Google Play interested in these developers? "SEA is the fastest growing market for gaming globally, and India is now our largest market in terms of app downloads. Developers from the region have created several globally successful titles, including Flappy Bird, FaceDance Challenge, Flippy Bottle Extreme, etc. Its no doubt the developers from these regions are some of the most innovative and resourceful globally, but like all developers that are just starting out, they could use a boost! Whether it's financial resources, analytics expertise or a network of mentors, we're here to offer the chance to access these resources to promising new developers from South Asia," says Tanwar.

"A lot of developers from this region could use a boost, whether its additional financial resources. Often, small studios also face significant challenges finding talent, raising funds and getting the right support system in place. The Indie Game Accelerator program aims to support talented game developers from the region, thereby fueling the larger game ecosystem and nourishing the pipeline for innovative titles from the region," he continues.

This isn't Google Play's first effort into helping indie Android developers reach their full potential, either. "Indie game developers have always been very important to Google Play, and we have been working on various tailored initiatives globally to support and showcase them, such as Indie Games Contest in Europe and Indie Games Festival in Japan as well as in Korea and Latin America. The idea behind Indie Games Accelerator is to help fast track developers from emerging markets in the early stages of their lifecycle and help them build commercially successful games. More than 40% of our total game installs are coming from emerging markets, and we want to help local developers make the most of this opportunity."

"For the past 2 years, we have been running an Indie game developer program in Southeast Asia and India. During this period we have been thinking about how we can bring together Google's gaming expertise along with the best industry mentors and make it available to Indie game developers. Indie Games Accelerator is a step in that direction. We have joined hands with Launchpad Accelerator, which is Google's startup-focused program, to create this gaming-focused special edition," he continues.

Google Play's initiatives in helping local devs is now branching out into other areas of the world, looking to reach new territories and help more local developers reach the ever-growing audiences for Android titles there, helping the audience find games from their friends and neighbors and celebrating the talents within these countries.

"We had some fantastic successes from the last year's program and are very excited about this year," says Tanwar. With games like Cat Quest and Simulacra coming from developers who've benefited from the program last year, Tanwar is hoping to see similar success stories coming this year as the program works to help even more developers find success through their passions.

"Indie game developers have always been very important to Google Play and we have been working on various initiatives globally to support and showcase them, such as Indie Games Contest in Europe and Indie Games Festival in Japan. The idea behind Indie Games Accelerator is to help fast track developers in early stage ecosystems/ emerging markets as we are seeing an amazing appetite for gaming there. More than 40% of our total game installs are coming from emerging markets, and we want to help local developers make the most of this opportunity," says Tanwar.

"Through this program, we are aiming to identify the brightest and best independent game developers in South and Southeast Asia, who can inspire and support the game ecosystems in their countries, and help them build long term successful and sustainable global businesses," he continues.

Interested devs should apply by the end of July 2018.

Developers interested in applying for the Google Play Indie Games Accelerator Program can do so through the program's site.