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Over 200 apps delisted by Google, claim app developers as government meets warring parties to find resolution | – Times of India



Government ministers on Monday (March 5) held multiple meetings with Google and startups that have been delisted from the tech giant’s Play store, but no solution seems to be on the horizon with Indian companies accusing the US giant of abusing its dominant position.
App developers claimed that more than 200 apps have been delisted by the app store Play, out of which less than 15 apps have been reinstated.”The apps that have been reinstated are those who have complied with Google’s policies. Most of us had to comply to get reinstated to maintain our visibility. People started considering us as fraud because they are unaware of what is actually happening,” told an app developer to news agency PTI.
Google vs Indian app developers
The heart of the dispute lies in Google’s move to levy fees ranging from 11% to 26% on in-app payments. This decision followed an order from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) that scrapped the previous fee structure of 15-30%. As a consequence, Google proceeded to delist apps that failed to comply with the new payment regime. The Supreme Court’s refusal to grant interim relief to these app developers further escalated the conflict.
Minister of State for IT and Electronics, Rajeev Chandrashekhar, and Union IT and Communications Minister, Ashwini Vaishnaw, engaged in separate dialogues with the affected startups. The Indian companies expressed their grievances and sought government intervention.
While Minister Vaishnaw remained tight-lipped about the specifics of the meetings, he assured stakeholders that updates would be shared once decisions were finalized. Meanwhile, Chandrashekhar virtually met with the Alliance of Digital India Foundation (ADIF), a representative body for Indian app developers. On social media platform X, formerly Twitter, he pledged the government’s commitment to fostering a level playing field for both large corporations and small enterprises.
Chandrashekhar tweeted, “Today, startups voiced their concerns regarding @google’s policies. We assured them that @GoI_MeitY will engage with Google to find sustainable, long-term solutions.”
Highlighting India’s remarkable startup evolution, the minister emphasized that the country now boasts over 1 lakh startups and 113 unicorns—a significant leap from the modest numbers in 2014. He projected even greater expansion, envisioning 10 lakh startups and 10,000 unicorns in the next decade.
ADIF representatives echoed their members’ concerns during meetings with both ministers. The industry body seeks immediate resolutions and a fair framework. Their grievances revolve around discriminatory pricing, arbitrary revenue sharing, and Google’s alleged misuse of its market dominance.
Google, for its part, engaged in discussions with Minister Vaishnaw, presenting its perspective and rationale behind the app removals. However, the battle lines remain drawn, and the fate of these startups hangs in the balance as negotiations continue.





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