IAMAI urges Google to refrain from delisting Indian apps from Play Store - Hindustan Times

IAMAI urges Google to refrain from delisting Indian apps from Play Store

ByVaishnawi Sinha
Mar 02, 2024 11:04 AM IST

Google has decided to remove multiple apps from the Play Store, including popular matrimony platforms.

Industry body IAMAI advised tech giant Google against removing and delisting any Indian apps from the Play Store over alleged non-compliance with its payments policy. This comes shortly after Google decided to remove multiple apps from the Google Play store, including popular matrimony apps.

A logo of Google is seen on its office building in Hyderabad. (REUTERS FILE)
A logo of Google is seen on its office building in Hyderabad. (REUTERS FILE)

Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) confirmed that at least four of its members have received notices from Google over a billing dispute with the company, and urged the tech giant not to delist any apps from the Play Store.

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In a statement, IAMAI said, “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.”

On Friday, Google said that a string of well-established companies have refused to pay the service fee to the company despite multiple warnings. As per Google, the service fee is applicable for platforms that have in-app sales of digital goods.

Google warned that it will not hesitate to take necessary action to enforce policies, including the removal of such non-compliant apps from Google Play.

While Google did not name any of the apps it has removed from the store, android phones did not give results for matrimonial apps such as Shaadi, Matrimony.com and Bharat Matrimony. Other apps that disappeared from the app store are Balaji Telefilms' Altt (formerly ALTBalaji), audio platform Kuku FM, dating service Quack Quack, Truly Madly.

Why did Google delist matrimony, dating apps in India?

Amid a war cry 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 blog post 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 blog post.

Google has further clarified that existing users will be able to use these apps without any hitches, but no new downloads will be allowed for the time being. It further said that developers 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.

(With inputs from PTI)

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