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Google Play Store is in the cross-hairs again for its Epic 30% cut
- A new lawsuit calls out Google for taking a cut of up to 30% from app developers.
- The filing comes a few days after Epic sued Google over the cut of payments as well.
Epic announced that it was suing the Google Play Store last week after Fortnite was removed from the storefront for implementing a direct payment system. The studio introduced its own payment option which offered a 20% discount over the Google payment option.
Now, a new antitrust lawsuit has been filed by law firm Hagens Berman in California (h/t: Apple Insider) over Google’s practices related to Google Play distribution and in-app payment processing fees. More specifically, the suit calls out Google for taking a cut of up to 30% from developers.
“It concerns the harm caused by Google’s ongoing abuse of its market power, including the exclusion of competition, the stifling of innovation, the inhibition of consumer choice, and Google’s imposition on app developers of a supra-competitive 30% transaction fee,” reads an excerpt of the lawsuit filing.
“Developers are harmed when they have to pay more than what the market would bear absent anti-competitive behavior. Innovation also suffers, as does competition more broadly,” reads an excerpt of the notice on the firm’s website.
The suit also points to a number of other Google practices as evidence of anti-competitive behavior. These practices include Google bundling the Play Store and other Google apps as part of a mandatory suite of apps on Android devices, as well as the search giant prohibiting its OEM partners from using a forked version of Android.
It’s worth noting that unlike Apple’s iOS, Android users are able to install apps from third-party stores and repositories. However, the suit uses Fortnite as an example of a developer trying the sideloading approach but not finding it worthwhile, with the game eventually appearing on the Play Store in April 2020.
Nevertheless, it looks like this lawsuit and Epic’s legal filings could have massive repercussions for the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. You can check out the full legal filing over here.