Google Paid Millions to Activision for Not Making a Play Store Rival

Following an order from India’s competition regulator, Google is pausing the need for developers in India to use its Play Store billing system.

Developers may be allowed to use an alternative payment until Google comes up with a solution, which is said to be exploring its legal options in the country. While we expect it to counter the order, Google may allow Indian developers to use their desired billing system, just like in South Korea.

Mandatory Play Store Billing System

Google and Apple have long been accused of being the gatekeepers of the smartphone ecosystem, with their respective OS – Android and iOS. They have their respective app stores with fixed billing programs, that take a 30% cut on all the transactions made through them.

While all app developers tolerated this till now, some like Epic Games have revolted against it. This led governments across the world to take a look again at how Apple and Google are exploiting developers, and regulate them accordingly.

In this pursuit, India has slapped a $113 million fine against Google, citing its stance on the Play Store billing process. Also, the Competition Commission of India has ordered Google to allow its developers to use a third-party billing system for their apps.

Based on it, Google said it’s pausing the enforcement of its Play Store billing system for Indian developers for an indefinite time. On its support page,

“Following the CCI’s recent ruling, we are pausing enforcement of the requirement for developers to use Google Play’s billing system for the purchase of digital goods and services for transactions by users in India while we review our legal options and ensure we can continue to invest in Android and Play.”

The company also said that Google Play’s billing system applies to users outside of India, in all in-app digital content purchases. Though Google seemed to be countering the order soon, it’s good for developers that they’ll be able to use the desired payment means until then.

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