acastro 180508 1777 google IO 0001

Google has expanded Play Store billing alternatives to many countries

Google has quietly expanded its “User Choice Billing” pilot to allow developers of non-gaming Android apps to offer third-party payment options as an alternative to Google Play. Developers will see their service fees drop from 15 to 30 percent by 4 percent when users choose the new third-party billing option, which the developer — not Google — must support in case of customer issues. This news was first reported 9to5Google.

Now, as of September 1st, registered developers from the European Economic Area (EEA), India, Japan, Indonesia, and Australia can participate in User Choice Billing, according to this registration page. Google argues that 99 percent of developers who use the company’s own Play Store billing are entitled to a 15 percent service fee rate — but it’s the revenue-generating Spotifys of the world that pay Google a contested 30 percent on every in-app purchase.

The user choice billing pilot originally launched in March, naming Spotify as its first partner, forcing Google to offer alternative in-app payments in South Korea. The moves come in direct response to fierce criticism from Google and Apple worldwide over the fees they charge from purchases made in their digital stores, which have locked developers out of third-party in-app payment systems.

There is no word on when the program will be expanded to game developers or developers based in the US. Google says only that “we expect details of the pilot to evolve as we learn more and receive additional feedback.”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.