Saturday, April 1, 2023

Tinder-owner Match says Google will allow alternative payment systems for now

Match Group Inc. said on Friday that Alphabet Inc.’s Google will temporarily allow the dating apps maker to offer users an option in the payment system.

Match sued Google in early May, calling the action a “last resort” to block Tinder and its other apps from being booted from the Google Play store for refusing to share up to 30% of sales.

The test date is currently set for April 2023.

The company said on Friday it has withdrawn its request for a temporary ban against Google after it made several concessions that would prevent Match’s apps from being removed from the Play Store for offering alternative payment options.

Google said Match will have to continue to integrate Google Play billing through a trial or until the dispute is settled.

Match’s lawsuit came against the backdrop of ongoing cases by “Fortnite” creator Epic Games, dozens of US state attorneys general and others targeting alleged antitrust conduct related to Google’s Play Store.

The lawsuit states that Google said it would halt downloads of some of Match’s apps until June 1 unless they fully offered Google’s payment system and shared revenue.

Most users on Match’s most popular app, Tinder, love its payment system, which allows installment plans, bank transfers, and other features not provided by Google, according to the lawsuit.

Match said Friday it plans to put up to $40 million in an escrow account instead of paying Google for billing transactions directly on the Android operating system outside of Google Play store billing as part of a temporary settlement.

Match has also raised concerns over Apple Inc.’s App Store fee and payment policies.

Apple has also been criticized for making its App Store into a “walled garden” to extort fees from developers who want to access users on the iOS ecosystem.

Google and Apple charge developers huge commissions and impose controls on software developers, forcing them to pay an amount if they use in-app payment systems.

(Reporting by Tiyashi Dutta and Chhavi Mehta in Bengaluru; Editing by Shaunak Dasgupta)

(Only the title and image of this report may have been reworked by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is generated automatically from a syndicated feed.)

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