Food delivery apps Zomato and Swiggy have received notices from Google for his or her in-app gamification features that allegedly violate the tech giant’s Play Store guidelines. the event comes just weeks after Paytm was blocked from the Play Store for a couple of hours for violating Google’s policy on sports betting activities.
When contacted, Zomato confirmed receiving the notice and termed it as “unfair”.
“Yes, we’ve received a notice from Google. We believe that the notice is unfair, but we are a little company and have already realigned our business strategy to suits Google’s guidelines,” a Zomato spokesperson said in an e-mailed response.
The spokesperson added that the corporate is going to be replacing Zomato Premier League with another program by the weekend.
While Swiggy didn’t discuss the event, sources said the corporate has paused the in-app feature and is in conversation with Google on this issue.
Google didn’t discuss the matter.
Various companies try to take advantage of the continued Indian Premier League (IPL) and have added gamification features to woo customers, enhance engagement and boost sales.
On September 18, the Paytm app was blocked from Play Store for a couple of hours for violating Google’s policy on sports betting activities.
The app was restored after the SoftBank-backed Paytm removed the ‘cashback’ feature linked to a game on the app.
Paytm had alleged that it had been “arm-twisted” by the program major to suits its biased Play Store policies “that are meant to artificially create Google’s market dominance”.
Interestingly, Google had on Tuesday had clarified that apps that prefer to sell digital content through its Play Store will need to use the Google Play billing system and pay a percentage of the in-app purchase as a fee.
Many Indian startups have raised concerns around this move, saying Google cannot force Indian app developers/owners to sell digital services by compulsorily using its billing system, and giving the US-based company a 30 percent fee on each transaction.
Many startup founders also believe that India needs an area app store to supply more options to consumers.
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