Google files a lawsuit that could kick Tinder out of the Play Store

It's counter-suing Match Group over in-app payments.

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Google files a lawsuit to kick Tinder out of the Play Store
Steve Dent/Engadget

Google has counter-sued Match seeking monetary damages and a judgement that would let it kick Tinder and the group's other dating apps out of the Play Store, Bloomberg has reported. Earlier this year, Match sued Google alleging antitrust violations over a decision requiring all Android developers to process "digital goods and services" payments through the Play Store billing system. 

Following the initial lawsuit in May, Google and Match reached a temporary agreement allowing Match to remain on the Play Store and use its own payments system. Google also agreed to make a "good faith" effort to address Match's billing concerns. Match, in turn, was to make an effort to offer Google's billing system as an alternative. 

However, Google parent Alphabet claims that Match Group now wants to avoid paying "nothing at all" to Google, including its 15 to 30 percent Play Store fees, according to a court filing. "Match Group never intended to comply with the contractual terms to which it agreed... it would also place Match Group in an advantaged position relative to other app developers," the document states.

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Match group said that Google's Play Store policies violate federal and state laws. "Google doesn’t want anyone else to sue them so their counterclaims are designed as a warning shot," Match told Bloomberg in a statement. “We are confident that our suit, alongside other developers, the US Department of Justice and 37 state attorneys general making similar claims, will be resolved in our favor early next year."

Match is referring to an antitrust action launched last year by States and the federal government probing Google's Play Store fees. Shortly before that, Google dropped its fee on app developer revenue to 15 percent on the first $1 million, and 30 percent after that. At the same time, it announced it would enforce a policy requiring all developers to process payments through the Play Store's billing system. Earlier this year, a Senate bill moved forward targeting in-app payments in both Google and Apple's stores. 

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