Indian developers benefit from Android, Play: Google on CCI penalty- QHN

Google on Wednesday said that it was “reviewing the decision to evaluate the next steps” on the Competition Commission of India’s (CCI’s) latest order on Google Play Store policies.

The CCI on Tuesday imposed a penalty of Rs 937 crore on Google for allegedly abusing the dominant position of its app store. It also asked Google to “not restrict app developers from using third-party billing/payment processing services”.

Google also said that Indian developers benefited from the “technology, flexibility” of Google Play.

The company, in a statement, said: “Indian developers have benefited from the technology, security, consumer protections, and unrivalled choice and flexibility that Android and Google Play provide. And by keeping costs low, our model has powered India’s digital transformation and expanded access to hundreds of millions of Indians. We remain committed to our users and developers, and are reviewing the decision to evaluate next steps.”

The CCI last week slapped a Rs 1,338-crore fine on Google for abusing its dominant position in multiple markets for the Android Mobile device ecosystem. It also issued a cease-and-desist order, asking Google to refrain from unfair business practices and modify its conduct within a defined timeline.

Google has been given 30 days to provide the requisite financial details and supporting documents.

Google has faced action from anti-competition regulatory authorities in many nations as it tackles criticism by developers for its policy to not allow third-party billing systems.

In March this year, Google announced the launch of a pilot programme that allows some developers to offer an additional billing system alongside Google Play.

This initiative came ahead of the announcement of Google already reducing commissions from 30 per cent to 15 per cent for the first $1 million developers earn as revenue using the Play billing system each year.

The company said that due to this pricing model shift, 99 per cent of developers qualify for a service fee of 15 per cent or less on its app store.

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