There are many methods that app developers can use to try and increase their revenues from apps. While most of us know the more obtuse methods like in-app advertising and purchases, there are other options. For instance, if you developer apps for Apple's App Store, there is the affiliate program which effectively allows developers to link to other sites, apps and products, all with a return for those who click through to those sites. However, for Android developers this is not exactly an option as there is no active affiliate service offered for apps listed on the Play Store.
Well, it seems that might be changing in the future as a new report this morning details that Google are rumored to be working on a new affiliate program for the Play Store. As mentioned, this will offer android app developers a new revenue stream for their apps. Now, the report does detail that nothing has been confirmed by Google, however, they have heard from a source who has reportedly been "briefed on the matter." The source suggests that the affiliation program is in the very earliest stages of development and could change drastically before any release, let alone, could also see the program abandoned altogether. However, the information states that the affiliate program will begin with Play Movies and Music before eventually branching out to other apps and services, and possibly even hardware.
As such, it does seem that looking at new ways to help develops better obtain returns on their apps, is something Google is actively trying to achieve. It was not that long ago, that reports of new A/B testing for developers was being looked at by Google, which would further allow an easier way for developers to see what is the best price-point or method of listing their apps. If the latest affiliate rumors are true, then this will further add to a growing way in which developers can monetize their apps. It has long been noted, that in spite of seeing larger number of downloads than Apple's App Store, the Play Store apps still seems to generate less overall revenues. So it seems likely that addressing this imbalance is Google's end goal.