Google to remove 10 Indian app developers for not adhering to billing policies

According to Google, this group of developers had more than three years to prepare and comply with the payment policies of the Play Store.

By  Storyboard18Mar 1, 2024 6:14 PM
Google to remove 10 Indian app developers for not adhering to billing policies
This move is part of a three-year-long issue, with 10 companies in India, including some major names not disclosed by Google, allegedly avoiding payment of fees despite benefiting from the platform. (Representative Image: Lauren Edvalson via Unsplash)

Google has said it would start removing 10 Indian app developers from its Play Store in India if developers do not adhere to the platform's billing policies. Though Google hasn't named the apps, the statement caused InfoEdge shares to drop and then recover by more than 2% after its founder Sanjeev Bikhchandani responded to reports suggesting the company's app might be among those that Google has pointed towards, as per a CNBC TV18 report.

Bikhchandani told CNBC-TV18 they have no pending invoices from Google and all have been paid on time. "The notice does not say they are being delisted. It says if you are non-compliant, then you will be delisted. We have been compliant since February 9, the date the Supreme Court order came out. We are replying to the notice," he said.

Matrimony.com, another app named in some reports, responded, saying they had received the notice from Google about Play Store Policy violations and the company's legal team was exploring the next steps. The company has said Google’s actions "literally means all the top matrimony services will be deleted". While speaking to Reuters, Matrimony.com said that Google has deleted matchmaking app Jodii in policy action.

This move is part of a three-year-long issue, with 10 companies in India, including some major names not disclosed by Google, allegedly avoiding payment of fees despite benefiting from the platform.

According to Google, this group of developers had more than three years to prepare and comply with the payment policies of the Play Store. In a blog post, Google stated, "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." The Supreme Court had agreed to hear pleas by some startups challenging Google's billing policy but had refused to pass an interim order protecting them from being removed from the Play Store. Unacademy and Shaadi.com were named in some previous reports to have been part of the startups challenging Google's billing policy.

The company said it currently has over 2,00,000 Indian app developers on Google Play who adhere to its policies, ensuring a safe platform. However, the non-compliance of these 10 companies is "creating an uneven playing field", putting other developers at a competitive disadvantage. "We’ve always respected local laws. For years, no court or regulator has denied Google Play’s right to charge for the value and services we provide. On 9 February, the Supreme Court also refused to interfere with our right to do so," Google emphasised in the blog post.

First Published on Mar 1, 2024 6:14 PM

More from Storyboard18

How it Works

EXCLUSIVE: Elections will drive exponential growth in news viewership: Havas Media's Uday Mohan

EXCLUSIVE: Elections will drive exponential growth in news viewership: Havas Media's Uday Mohan

How it Works

Bournvita among drinks to be removed from e-commerce platforms' "health drinks" section, says Govt

Bournvita among drinks to be removed from e-commerce platforms' "health drinks" section, says Govt

How it Works

How sneakers made their way into corporate culture

How sneakers made their way into corporate culture

How it Works

2023 EV battery market growth exceeds that of EVs, Chinese dominance continues

2023 EV battery market growth exceeds that of EVs, Chinese dominance continues

How it Works

OnePlus products to not be sold by retail chains starting May 1

OnePlus products to not be sold by retail chains starting May 1

How it Works

SEBI says 'no action' against Zee's Subhash Chandra until April 30

SEBI says 'no action' against Zee's Subhash Chandra until April 30

How it Works

Premji Invest to fund $50-$70 million in Canva

Premji Invest to fund $50-$70 million in Canva

How it Works

Apple assembles $14 billion worth of iPhones in India in fiscal 2024

Apple assembles $14 billion worth of iPhones in India in fiscal 2024