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Business News/ Companies / News/  IAMAI instructs Google to hold off delisting apps amid Billing Policy dispute, 4 members receive notice
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IAMAI instructs Google to hold off delisting apps amid Billing Policy dispute, 4 members receive notice

IAMAI 'advises' Google not to delist apps from Play store; says 4 members got notices

IAMAI vs. Google: Clash Over App Store Fees in India (Reuters )Premium
IAMAI vs. Google: Clash Over App Store Fees in India (Reuters )

The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) has urged tech giant Google to refrain from removing apps from its Google Play Store in the ongoing dispute over billing policies. This comes after Google issued warnings of delisting apps that do not comply with its Play Store billing rules, according to a report by PTI.

IAMAI, which represents over 580 Indian companies including startups and multinational corporations, confirmed that at least four of its members have received delisting notices from Google. The association claims that these developers have a pending case before the Supreme Court of India and hence, Google should not take "coercive action" during the legal proceedings.

The tech giant requires developers using the Google Play store to use its own built-in payment services, and pay a 30% commission for in-app purchases, including selling digital items and subscription services, according to a Mint report.

In a statement, IAMAI advised Google not to delist any apps from Google Play.

"The affected members of IAMAI are of the view that a substantive hearing of the case is pending before the Supreme Court of India, and Google should not take any coercive action during the pendency of the case," IAMAI said.

In response, Google asserted that a small group of companies, including well-established ones, have chosen not to pay the Play Store service fee for in-app purchases, creating an unfair advantage over the majority of developers who comply with the policy. Google claimed to have provided ample time, over three years, for developers to adapt to the policy, including an additional three weeks following a recent Supreme Court order.

Amid a warcry over Google Play billing policy by some prominent Indian startups and the recent launch of Indus Appstore, the Made-in-India app market challenger, Google in a blogpost asserted that allowing a small group of developers to get differential treatment from the vast majority of developers who are paying their fair share creates an uneven playing field putting all other apps and games at a competitive disadvantage.

"After giving these developers more than three years to prepare, including three weeks after the Supreme Court's order, we are taking necessary steps to ensure our policies are applied consistently across the ecosystem, as we do for any form of policy violation globally," Google said in its blogpost.

It went on to say that enforcement of the policy, when necessary, can include removal of non-compliant apps from Google Play. Google, however, added that existing users will be able to continue to access the apps without interruption and that it continues "to offer our support to help developers get into compliance".

Developers, Google said, are welcome to resubmit their apps to be listed on Play by opting for one of the three billing options as part of its payment policy.

"Today, we have over 2,00,000 Indian developers using Google Play who adhere to our policies, helping us ensure we have a safe platform; however, for an extended period of time, 10 companies, including many well-established ones, have chosen to not pay for the immense value they receive on Google Play by securing interim protections from the court," Google had said.

(With Inputs from PTI)

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Published: 02 Mar 2024, 08:55 AM IST
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