On Friday, March 1, Google said it would take action against a group of Indian app developers for not following Play Store billing rules. The Alphabet-owned company has claimed that ten Indian app developers, which include “very well-established” companies, have failed to pay the Play Store fee to avail its services and may now be removed from the market of Android apps as a result. The tech giant also emphasized that it is taking steps not to give different treatment to the majority of its developer base, who pay their share.

According to a report from TechCrunch, a group of Indian companies have filed petitions in the Madras High Court challenging the billing rules of the Google Play Store, claiming that the tech giant is charging a very high amount as a fee for its services. The crux of the problem lies in the fact that the tech giant charges between 11 percent and 26 percent as a service fee for every paid app download as well as in-app purchases.

The group reportedly includes Bharat Matrimony, Shaadi.com, Unacademy, Kuku FM, Info Edge and others. While the Supreme Court dismissed the appeal, the Supreme Court of India agreed to hear the petitions filed by the firms under report by NDTV Profit. However, the Supreme Court refused to grant an interim order to Google not to remove the companies’ apps from the Play Store.

The group of app developers later wrote to Google asking it not to remove the apps until March 19, when the special leave (SPL) petition will be heard by the Supreme Court. reported The Economic Times. Now, however, it appears that Google has decided not to listen to the pleas and instead start cracking down on non-paying developers.

IN post, Google acknowledged the Supreme Court’s decision not to ask the tech giant to keep apps on the platform. It said: “For years, no court or regulator has denied Google Play’s right to charge for the value and services we provide. On February 9, the Supreme Court also refused to interfere with our right to do so. While some of the developers who were denied temporary protection have begun to fairly participate in our business model and ecosystem, others are choosing to find ways not to.” It further states that only 60 developers in India have been charged a fee over 15 percent.

The Android platform developer further stressed that not taking action would be unfair to more than 2 lakh Indian developers who have followed its charging policy. “After giving these developers more than three years to prepare, including three weeks after the Supreme Court’s order, we are taking the necessary steps to ensure that our rules are applied consistently across the ecosystem, as we do for any form of infringement.” rules globally,” Google added.

The TechCrunch report mentions, citing unnamed sources, that the tech giant will begin removing several of these apps from its marketplace starting Friday. We at Gadgets 360 found that matrimonial app Shaadi by Shaadi.com and Jodii by Matrimony.com, content streaming platform by Alt Balaji Altt and dating app QuackQuack have now been removed from the platform and the search result shows the icon of app and its name with the message “This app is not available”.

However, removal from the platform is not the end. Google said developers can resubmit their apps to be listed on the Play Store as long as they adhere to payment rules and possibly clear their dues. Alternatively, a favorable Supreme Court ruling after March 19 could result in Google being ordered to review its charging policy.

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