Validation policies for apps submitted to the Office Store (version 1.2)

apps for Office and SharePoint

This document describes the criteria that are used to validate apps as being eligible for listing in the Office Store.

Last modified: April 28, 2015

Applies to: apps for Office | apps for Office Mix | apps for SharePoint | Office 365 | Office Add-ins | SharePoint Add-ins

Note Note

The names "apps for Office" and "apps for SharePoint" are changing to "Office Add-ins" and "SharePoint Add-ins". During the transition, the documentation and the UI of some Office and SharePoint products and Visual Studio tools might still use the terms "apps for Office" and "apps for SharePoint". For details, see New name for apps for Office and SharePoint.

In this article
1. Apps provide value to the Office Store customer
2. Office Store apps can display certain ads
3. Apps can sell additional features or content through in-app purchases
4. Apps behave predictably
5. Apps put the customer in control
6. Apps are appropriate for a global audience
7. Apps are easily identified and understood
8. App updates must not decrease your app’s functionality
9. Refunds
10. Apps utilize supported capabilities
Additional resources

Note Note

For the most current version of the validation policies, see Validation policies for apps submitted to the Office Store (version 1.8).


Your app must offer customers a unique creative value or utility.


Your app must work according to your description, and must not be in an unfinished state.


Your app’s trial functionality must reasonably resemble its paid version.


Apps can contain ads. The purpose of the app must be more than the display of the advertisement.


Ads in your apps must comply with our content policies, described in policy six.


Ads should not interfere with app functionality and should match our ad design guidelines.


The elements of your app's description, such as screenshots, text, and promotional images must describe your app and not contain additional advertising.


Currently, Microsoft does not provide native application programming interfaces (APIs) to support in-app purchases. You may use any third-party payment system for your in-app purchases.


Additional features or content available for sale through in-app purchases should be clearly listed in your app description.


Your app must not stop responding, end unexpectedly, or contain programming errors.


Your updated apps must not decrease your app’s functionality in a way that would be unexpected to a reasonable customer.


Your app description, imagery, documentation and any other associated metadata must be consistent with the functionality of the app.


You must provide instructions and links to resources in the submission form’s testing notes that will be needed for Microsoft validation of your app. If, for example, your app requires a login/password, you must give Microsoft a pre-existing working login for testing purposes .


Your app must not make unexpected changes to a customer’s document.


Your app must not jeopardize or compromise the security or functionality of Microsoft products.


The application must be free of viruses, malware, and any malicious software.


Your app must not install or launch other executable code on the user’s computer without the explicit permission of the user.


No action should take more than three seconds to respond without some type of loading UX or warning.


Your app should not consume an unreasonable amount of memory that negatively impacts the performance of an average customer’s environment.


Your app UI should not look unfinished.


Your app must be fully functional with the supported operating systems and browsers for Office 2013 and SharePoint 2013.

For more information on supported operating systems and browsers, see


If your app enables access to and use of Internet-based or mobile services, or collects and/or transmits user information to you or a third party, you must provide privacy details in a privacy statement that will be published with your app.


Your app must obtain consent to publish personal information.


Your app must not obtain or store customer information or content without notifying the user.


Your app must not pass or transmit customer data without notifying the user.


Your app must protect customers from unintentional large data transfers over metered networks.


Your app must not implement geo-blocking of customers without explicitly stating this in the app description.


Apps must be SSL-secured (HTTPS).

For more information, see Why do my apps have to be SSL-secured? in Office Store app submission FAQ.


Your app must not contain adult content.


Your app must not contain content that advocates discrimination, hatred, or violence based on membership in a particular racial, ethnic, national, linguistic, religious, or other social group, or based on a person’s gender, age, or sexual orientation.


Your app must not contain content or functionality that encourages, facilitates or glamorizes illegal activity.


Your app must not contain or display content that a reasonable person would consider to be obscene.


Your app must not contain content that is defamatory, libelous or slanderous, or threatening.


Your app must not contain content that encourages, facilitates or glamorizes excessive or irresponsible use of alcohol or tobacco products, drugs or weapons.


Your app must not contain content that encourages, facilitates or glamorizes extreme or gratuitous violence, human rights violations, or the creation or use of weapons against a person or animal.


Your app must not contain excessive or gratuitous profanity.


It is your responsibility to determine if you have the right to use the chosen name, content, logos, copyright, trademarks, code, online services and APIs.


Your app must not encourage or enable piracy of copyrighted content.


You must provide details on the submission form if your app calls, supports, contains, or uses cryptography.


Your app must not be designed or marketed to perform, instruct, or encourage tasks that could cause physical harm to a customer or any other person.


The metadata that you submit with your app must be accurate.


Your app must have a unique name.


Your app’s description must be reflective of your app’s functionality.


You must describe your app in English.


Your app must not falsely declare support for multiple languages.


The capabilities you declare must relate to the core functions and description of your app.


You must provide at least one screenshot of your app.


Your app’s packages must be correctly formatted and conform to the current manifest schema.

For detailed manifest schema information, see Schema reference for apps for Office manifests (v1.1) and Schema reference for manifests of apps for SharePoint. Also see What are some common errors to avoid when submitting my app to the Office Store? in Office Store app submission FAQ.


The category you assign your app must correspond to the character or purpose of the app.


Your app must not be a duplicate of an app you’ve already submitted.


Your app must include the app name, version information, and technical support contact information that is easily discoverable.


English must be one of the supported languages within your app.


Your app name may not include "add-in" or "plug-in" or derivatives.


If your app uses the JavaScript APIs for Office, you must use the Microsoft-hosted Office.js file.

For more information, see How do I reference the JavaScript APIs for Office in my apps? in Office Store app submission FAQ.


If you update your app’s pricing/licensing terms, you must continue to offer the original functionality to the existing customer base at the original pricing. New prices and/or licensing terms may only apply to new users.


If you update your app’s pricing from free to paid, existing app users must receive the same level of functionality as before the update.


If you update your app from supporting site licenses for free to not supporting them, existing users must continue to be supported for free.


Your apps cannot be resubmitted more than ten times per month, up to a total of 30 times per year.


If you withdraw your app from sale, you must ensure any external web services and/or webpages that support the app will continue to function for 90 days. Failure to do so will make you responsible for refund liability towards your customers.


If your app is found to violate any of our app store policies, your app can be removed from the Office Store. If a customer needs to be refunded, the refund will be deducted from any pending payouts to your account.


Your paid apps must follow the Office Store commerce requirements.

For more information, see Can I submit a paid app to the Office Store? in Office Store app submission FAQ.


If your app for SharePoint has autohosting capabilities, it will not be accepted in the Office Store until autohosted capabilities are enabled.

For more information, see Can I submit an autohosted app to the Office Store? in Office Store app submission FAQ.

As these requirements evolve, we’ll note the changes in the revision history here. Stable requirements are critical to your doing your best work, so we aim to ensure the changes we do make are sustainable and continue to protect and enhance your apps.

Thank you again for joining us in this commitment to delivering fantastic experiences.

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