Google offers developers $90 million to settle Play Store billing fight

Developers feel they were forced into using Google’s in-house payment processor.

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 25: The Manhattan Google headquarters is seen on January 25, 2021 in New York City. Google announced today that it will be opening up select Google facilities to serve as mass vaccination sites open to anyone eligible to receive the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine. They will also commit to using more than $150 million dollars to promote vaccine education. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)
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Google has offered to put $90 million on the table to settle a brewing conflict between it and a number of Android developers. As Reuters reports, the issue centers around the mandatory use of Google’s in-house payments platform, with its fixed 30 percent cut. Developers feel that Google had worked behind the scenes to close off the options for alternative payment systems. It’s prompted the search giant to offer a settlement to avoid “years of uncertain and distracting litigation.”

In a statement, Google said that, if the court approves the offer, it will put $90 million into a fund to “support US developers who earned two million dollars of less in annual revenue through Google Play during each year from 2016-2021.” If it goes ahead, Google will automatically notify the people who qualify for a payout, as well as affirm several changes it’s already started to make. This includes lowering the commission to 15 percent for the first $1 million in annual revenue, enabling developers to communicate with users outside of the app, and make it easier to use rival app stores and billing platforms.

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