Google Extends Third-Party Play Store Payments to More Countries

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Google’s answer to enabling third-party payment options in the Google Play Store — User Choice Billing — is now being piloted in more countries to let developers of non-gaming Android apps test offering payment alternatives.

Developers will see the typical 15% to 30% service fee charged by Google drop by 4% when users opt to use a third-party billing option, according to multiple media outlets on Friday (Sept. 2). App developers who go that route will then have to deal with customer billing disputes.

Registered developers from the European Economic Area (EEA), India, Japan, Indonesia and Australia can participate in User Choice Billing as of Thursday (Sept. 1), according to Google’s enrollment page.

“Android has always been a uniquely open operating system and we continue to evolve our platform and increase the choices available to developers and users while maintaining our ability to invest in the ecosystem,” a Google spokesperson said.

“With this next phase of Google Play’s user choice billing pilot, all non-gaming developers can offer an additional billing choice alongside Play’s billing system for their users in Australia, Japan, India, Indonesia, and the European Economic Area. We will be sharing more in the coming months as we continue to build and iterate with our pilot partners,” the spokesperson said.

See also: Google Opens up Google Play Store Ahead of Potential Legislation

Google has been looking to make changes and appease developers and regulators ahead of the passing of U.S. legislation still on deck, the American Innovation and Choice Online Act, and the Open App Markets Act, PYMNTS reported in July.

The Silicon Valley search giant proposed a settlement that would establish a $90 million fund to support U.S. developers who earned $2 million or less through Google Play each year from 2016 to 2021, PYMNTS reported. The court’s decision is still pending.

Read more: Google Play Prepares for Digital Markets Act by Allowing Alternative Billing Systems

The current expansion of User Choice Billing still sidesteps the U.S. but now moves into some of Android’s biggest markets such as India and Indonesia. The pilot originally launched in March with Spotify named as its first partner.