The parent company of Tinder and Hinge has . IN (PDF link) filed Monday in federal court in California, Match Group claims the technology giant has violated federal and state antitrust laws with its Play Store guidelines.
The case concerns a policy that Google plans to implement later this year. In the fall of 2020, the company “” “its position on in-app purchases, announcing that it may require all Android developers to process payments involving” digital goods and services “through the Play Store billing system. Google initially said it would apply the rules on September 30, 2021, but later the deadline is June 1, 2022.
Match claims that Google “previously assured” the company that it could use its own payment systems. The company claims that Google has threatened to remove its applications from the Play Store if it does not comply with the upcoming policy change by the June 1 deadline. Match also claims that Google has preventively started rejecting app updates that support existing payment systems found in its dating services. “Ten years ago, Match Group was a partner of Google. We are now his hostage, “the company said in a complaint.
“This case is a last resort,” Match CEO Shar Duby said in a statement the company shared with Engadget. “We have tried in good faith to resolve these concerns with Google, but their insistence and threats to remove our brands’ applications from the Google Play Store by June 1 left us with no choice but to take legal action.”
In a statement shared by Google with Engadget, the search giant said Match was eligible to pay for in-app purchases, a percentage the company noted was the lowest among “major application platforms.” Google also pointed out that Android’s “openness” allows Match to distribute its apps through alternative app stores and sideloads if the company “does not want to follow” its policies. “This is just a continuation of Match Group’s personal campaign to avoid paying for the significant value they receive from the mobile platforms on which they have built their business,” a Google spokesman told Engadget.
The lawsuit comes at a time when both Apple and Google are facing significant regulatory pressure from lawmakers around the world to change their app store policies. In February, the Senate Justice Committee. If the legislation becomes law in its current form, it would prevent both companies from locking third-party developers into their respective payment systems.
In March, Google announced that it would test third-party billing systems. In particular, Match says the pilot offers “nothing new for developers or users.” The company also said Google had rejected its request to be included in the program and would not share the inclusion criteria.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, regardless of our parent company. Some of our stories involve partnerships. If you buy something through one of these links, we can earn a partner commission.