Google expands third-party billing support to more countries

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Android developers in more countries now have the option to offer third-party billing options.

As spotted by 9to5Google, Google quietly expanded its ‘User Choice Billing’ pilot which allows third-party billing options in non-gaming apps.

Registered developers in the European Economic Area (EEA), India, Australia, Japan, and Indonesia can now participate in User Choice Billing.

A Google spokesperson said:

“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.

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.”

Google says that 99 percent of Android developers qualify for its reduced 15 percent fee when using Play Store billing. Developers who earn over $1 million per year are subject to a 30 percent fee.

If a third-party billing option is used, the developer – not Google – must provide support for any customer issues.

The pilot for User Choice Billing was initially launched in March. Spotify, a business that would otherwise be subject to Google’s full 30 percent cut, was the first to take it up.

Last year, new legislation in South Korea forced Google and Apple to support alternative payment systems. The Netherlands’ Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) recently ordered Apple to allow dating apps in the country to use alternative payment systems.

Notably, Google’s User Choice Billing pilot is yet to reach US shores. Google says that it expects “the pilot details to continue to evolve as we learn more and receive additional feedback.”

(Photo by Fabian Blank on Unsplash)

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