Google has delayed the implementation of its proposed mandatory 30% charge on Play Store transactions in India following reports that leading developers in the country are mulling the creation of a new Android app store with support from the government to circumvent the US tech giant’s new billing policies, which went live globally on Sunday, October 4th. This new policy is being deferred only in India, which has been the primary focus for the company in its quest for the so-called ‘next billion users’.
In a statement released earlier today, Purnima Kochikar, Director of Business Development of Games & Applications at Google Play, said: “(We’re) extending the time for developers in India to integrate with the Play billing system, to ensure they have enough time to implement UPI for (the) subscription payment option that will be made available on Google Play — for all apps that currently use an alternative payment system we set a timeline of 31st March 2022”.
The company is also “setting up listening sessions with leading Indian startups to understand their concerns more deeply. We will be setting up Policy Workshops to help clear any additional questions about our Play Store policies … We have always said developers should have a choice in how they distribute their apps, and that stores should compete for consumers’ and developers’ business,” she said.
The move comes just days after Google announced new Play Store billing policies that seek to enforce a mandatory 30% commission on every in-app purchase made through any app listed on the Play Store. Following that announcement, dozens of companies discussed forming a coalition to pressure Google and Apple to reduce their demand, saying that a 30% cut is simply unfeasible.