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Google tweaks Android licensing terms in India, allows third-party billing for all apps

Google said device makers will be able to license individual Google apps for pre-installation on their devices

January 26, 2023 / 12:07 PM IST
Indian users will now have the option to choose their default search engine while setting up a new Android smartphone or tablet in the country.

Indian users will now have the option to choose their default search engine while setting up a new Android smartphone or tablet in the country.

Google will allow device makers to license individual Google apps to pre-install on their devices and shortly roll out third-party in-app billing to all apps and games in India, as the tech giant makes sweeping changes to its Android and Play business in the country to comply with the Competition Commission of India (CCI)'s recent antitrust directives.

These changes come after the Supreme Court declined to stay Google's appeal against CCI's order on January 19, while extending the deadline to comply with the watchdog's directive by a week to January 26.

In October 2022, CCI had directed the tech giant to modify its conduct towards smartphone makers through a range of corrective measures besides imposing a penalty of Rs 1,338 crore for exploiting its dominant position in Android.

Through a separate order in the same month, CCI also directed Google not to restrict app developers from using any third-party billing or payment processing services to purchase apps or for in-app billing on Google Play besides a range of corrective measures to modify the company's app payment policies.