Google Faces Probe Over In-App Billing Practices

Google Faces Probe Over In-App Billing Practices

Mar 15 Tech Standard

Friction continues between Google and Indian startups over in-app billing practices. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has ordered a fresh investigation into Google, accusing the tech giant of "implementing its policies in a discriminatory manner." This move comes amidst ongoing disputes about the fees Google charges developers for in-app purchases.

The situation has been simmering for months. Indian startups have been vocal about their disapproval of Google's commission structure, which can range from 11% to 26%. This comes after the CCI previously directed Google to dismantle its earlier system charging between 15% and 30% in 2022.

Adding fuel to the fire, Google removed over 100 Indian apps from its Play Store earlier this month for alleged billing violations. These apps were later restored after the Indian government intervened. This incident likely played a role in the CCI's decision to launch a new probe. Google, on the other hand, maintains its innocence, claiming the fees support investments in the Play Store and the Android operating system.

The investigation is expected to be completed within 60 days. This development signifies the CCI's close scrutiny of Google's practices and its commitment to ensuring a fair playing field for Indian startups within the Android ecosystem. The outcome of this investigation could potentially influence the future of in-app billing practices in India and have broader implications for Google's operations in the country.


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