Google (GOOGL) has announced that it is extending the time for developers in India to integrate with the Play billing system to 31 March 2022. The company is facing mounting protests from Indian developers over the 30% commission charged on in-app purchases.
According to the tech giant the move should ensure that developers in the country “have enough time to implement the UPI for subscription payment option that will be made available on Google Play.”
“For all apps that currently use an alternative payment system we set a timeline of 31st March 2022” the company announced on its blog on October 5.
Google also revealed that it is setting up ‘listening sessions’ with leading Indian startups to ‘understand their concerns more deeply’, as well as Policy Workshops to resolve additional questions on Play Store policies.
In the blog post, Google clarifies that the policy only applies if a developer charges users to download their app or they sell in-app digital items. This is less than 3% of developers with apps on Google Play, says GOOGL.
The payments policy is not new, points out Google- and more than 97% of developers with apps on the Play store already comply with the policy.
“It is our global business model and policy, and we have always required developers who distribute their apps on Play to use Google Play’s billing system if they offer in-app purchases of digital goods” the company stated.
Shares in Google are up 9% year-to-date, and the stock scores a Strong Buy consensus from the Street. That’s with 32 recent buy ratings vs just 2 hold ratings. Meanwhile the average analyst price target of $1,781 indicates 22% upside potential lies ahead.
Monness analyst Brian White last week reiterated a Buy rating on the stock with a $1,700 price target, writing: “We believe Alphabet should trade at a healthy premium to the market and tech sector.”
“Although we expect Alphabet’s [Google] will continue to grapple with digital ad spending trends and wrestle with antitrust investigations, we remain optimistic about Google Cloud and Google Play, combined with the company’s longer-term position in a world that will become much more digital,” White told investors. (See Alphabet’s stock analysis on TipRanks)
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