Google Play Store now allows Spotify to use alternative billing for in-app purchases
The Google announced today The popular music streaming service Spotify will be able to bill Android users directly in the Google Play version of Spotify without having to go through the Google Play billing system.
Spotify is Google’s number one partner for “User Choice BillingA feature that allows Android users to make purchases using the payment option they prefer. User Choice Billing is essentially an alternative billing option for in-app purchases, and comes with reduced fees.
Spotify will be able to collect payments directly from users, and Google will charge Spotify four percent less than usual. Spotify and other developers that eventually embraced User Choice Billing will still need to give Google a portion of their app sales and purchases, but at a discount. Google typically collects between 15 and 30 percent of in-app purchases, just like Apple.
in Blog postSpotify said Google has taken a “bold step to help level the playing field,” and that “fair and open platforms” bring “friction-free consumer experiences.”
Spotify has been publicly championing the fairness of the platform and expanded payment options for years. We believe that fair and open platforms provide better consumer experiences that are frictionless and also enable developers to imagine, innovate, and thrive.
Spotify is rolling out an initial test app for user choice billing to users in select countries starting this week. Google today also announced a partnership with Bumble, with Bumble adding support in the coming months.
Google’s User Choice Billing is an option in 35 countries, including the US, most of Europe, Australia, Japan, and more, and it’s a beta program that other developers can join as well.
With User Choice Billing, Google has distinguished the Play Store from App Store, because Apple doesn’t allow apps to use alternate billing at this time. However, there are two exceptions, including South Korea and the Netherlands. Regulators in these countries have forced Apple to allow some apps to use third-party payment providers.
In the Netherlands, Apple collects 27 percent commission Instead of a 30 percent commission, and in South KoreaApple takes a 26 percent commission. Both reduced commissions are similar to what Google did for its user choice billing system. With Google adopting alternative billing options and ongoing regulatory pressure, it’s possible that Apple will also fold and expand Dutch and South Korean operations into other countries and app types, but Apple continues to struggle for in-app purchases to remain the only payment method in the App Store for now.
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