Google has agreed to pay app developers $90 million to settle a legal dispute over the money they made from developing apps for Android smartphones and convincing users to make app purchases. According to a lawsuit filed in federal court in San Francisco, app developers accused Alphabet Inc’s Google of closing the app ecosystem and redirecting many payments through its Google Pay billing system with a 30% default service fee using agreements with smartphone manufacturers, revenue sharing agreements, and technical barriers, as reported by Reuters.
In a blog post, the tech firm stated that as part of the proposed settlement, it would invest a $90 million fund to assist app developers who earned $2 million or less in annual revenue from 2016 to 2022. “A vast majority of US developers who earned revenue through Google Play will be eligible to receive money from this fund if they choose,” the company stated in a blog post.
The proposed settlement should be accepted by the court.
According to Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, who represented the plaintiffs, this $90 million fund was eligible to 48,000 app developers and the lowest compensation is $250.
Google also announced that it would charge developers a 15% commission on the first million dollars in sales made through the Play store each year. The tech company began doing this in 2021.
Congress is currently debating legislation that would require big tech companies like Google and Apple to allow sideloading, the practice of downloading apps without using an app store because it would prevent developers from using the firms’ payment systems. Google, on the other hand, claims to allow sideloading.