tokyodev forum

Publish iOS/Android apps under visa status


Sorry I tried to google but I had no luck with these particular subjects, so I wondered if any of you here had the same problem.

I’m writing to you as a language student with a student visa.
Do you know by any chance if I can make apps on android/iOS and monetize them under my visa status somehow? Or else is it not permitted?
What if I have a working visa?
Can I work and at the same time publish(and monetize) apps I create in free time? (Or not permitted by visa?)
Any of you is doing this?

Thank you

Article 19 of the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act allows for renumeration that is a “incidental reward in daily life”. The wording of it doesn’t make it quite clear to me whether that only applies to working visas, or if student visas are covered as well.

Whether or not it is incidental is obviously subjective, but if it was something you were spending a couple of hours a week on, it’s probably okay. If you’re doing it full time, probably not.

However, perhaps the issue is moot, as I think it is quite challenging to build an app that’s popular enough to monetize in any significant way regardless. Unless this is something you’ve had success with before, you could start by just releasing any apps you build for free. Only when you’ve started to see success with one, then you could worry about monetization and the visa implications.

Thank you for your time.
I’m actually training in Swift because becoming a Mobile Engineer is kinda my “dev dream” these days.
(I created this topic because I was just wondering if I could get some money while enjoying my training.
But of course not a problem if not.)

As I feel creating another topic about similar subject is not ideal, I will just ask here:

I have some experience (1-2 years) in JS(VueJS) and .NetCore and 0 in Swift development in professional environment, just learning by myself. In general I’m considered still a Junior Dev.
Do you think I would have some chances of finding a job as swift engineer in Tokyo if I publish 1 or 2 apps to show that I can at least do something? Or else will I have really low chances because I have no professional experience and I will be kinda forced to go the JS path?
My deadline to find a job is October.

It’s hard to say for sure what your chances of getting a job will be, as there’s a big difference between creating a “hello world” app, and something that’s actually impressive.

While spamming your resume to every swift position is just wasting everyone’s time, there’s nothing wrong with taking the time to make a custom application to a job for which you’re under qualified for. If you’re able to demonstrate you have already learned the basics yourself, companies may be willing to overlook your lack of professional experience.

One other thing to consider is to look for a job where you can start off by using your existing professional experience, but transition to a Swift role after being hired. Companies will usually let someone change their role internally, especially once you’ve proved your value.

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