Google said it will allow app developers in the UK to use alternative payment options following an investigation by the UK’s competition regulator.
The tech giant said it would present other payment options to Google Play’s billing system for in-app purchases “in a neutral manner” if its commitments are accepted by the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).
The proposition comes following a CMA study, in which the regulator expressed concern that Google’s control over available payment options reduced choice for android users.
The Google Play app store accounts for over 90 per cent of app downloads on Android phones, according to the CMA.
The proposed changes to its app store payment rules, if accepted by the regulator, would allow app developers to use Google Play’s existing payment system or offer an alternative one.
“Google’s complete control over in-app payments raised concerns this unfairly restricted app developers – by forcing them to use Google Play’s billing system – putting distance between them and their customers and reducing competition, to the detriment of Google Play users,” Ann Pope, the CMA’s Senior Director of Antitrust, said in a statement.
Google said it would phase the proposals in if they are approved by the CMA, targeting non-gaming apps first before rolling them out to gaming app developers by October this year.
The CMA has now opened a public consultation on the changes and will start investigating feedback in June.