Google Giving Developers The Boot Unless They Use Google Wallet For In-App Purchases (Business As Usual)


An exclusive story today from Reuters is reporting that developers on Google Play (formerly known as the Android Market) are being forced to use the Google Wallet service — which is linked to Google Checkout — for all their in-game, in-app purchases (sorry, no Paypal here). This is all done under the threat of being booted from Google Play altogether for non-compliance. Using any other payment options was quoted by developer Papaya Mobile as a violation of Google’s terms of use.

This “news” was echoed across the usual blogs who were puzzled by Google’s sudden iron fisting of their Market. Google did eventually comment on the matter saying that it’s business as usual and that nothing has changed in their terms of service. Apparently, this is the way things have always been for developers who would like to use in-app purchases for their goods. Although, as Google pointed out, there are 2 exceptions to the rule: One, physical goods from retailers like Amazon or eBay and second, digital goods like books and other transferable items.

I, for one, prefer to keep all of my purchases under the watchful of eye of Google and kept inside the Market where they’re treated the same as if they were purchased apps. The other day I purchased some in-game items on my Galaxy Note and it was nice having the same purchased goods unlocked and carried over to my Galaxy S II. Gotta love the Google Plarket. Market. Play. Google Play.

[Reuters | TheVerge]


Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. I agree…

  2. I can’t see how this will benefit devs. While I’m glad Google doesn’t allow paypal on a personal level, I think the more the choices a dev has, the more likely they are to add apps to the market. 

    I think Google’s making a mistake with this.

    1. They’re welcome to try to sell the app outside the market. Google takes a cut of market purchases, and they’re trying to game the system by using google’s distribution platform without paying.

    2. I don’t think it’s for the devs though… more for the consumers?

      1. I think it’s more for Google.  Doesn’t cost devs more than using Paypal (less, if the dev passes $100K in sales), so the only party to lose out of this is (potentially) Paypal, in lost income.


  4. They won’t find any other market/platform worth a damn that doesn’t have the same rules.

  5. I don’t see what the big deal is…developers will get paid either way.

    1. Apparently, they could get bigger cuts using their own services. 

      1. Or they can get none using another service. Besides I don’t see Google taking much more than PayPal would.

  6. The way google is going, its going to overcook thw whole android ecosystem, Behold the reencarnation of Steve Jobs. Android and google should mantain as 2 different spectrums

    1. really with the steve jobs stuff still

    2. lolwut.

      Android has always been in the Google ecosystem. It’s always relied on Google Wallet and Gmail, and more recently G+, to function.

  7. Soooo, Verizon Galaxy Nexus users are screwed? I know we have the ability to sideload Wallet, but this certainly is troubling.

    1. Nope. Google Wallet is Google Payment system online. Not just their NFC/App thing.

      It used to be called Google Checkout, but they just combined the two and named it wallet.

      1. Ah, right.

  8. People have been complaining since the early days of Android that Google should do something with the market.  In the past few days they’ve done tons and all people are doing is complaining.  For crying out loud, it’s great to see a pro-active stance and to know Google is taking Android extremely serious on all levels.  Since they went with the more Metro tile format, I’ve been loving the changes.  I think the Market/Play is now more professionally polished than ever, thank you Google for the improvements.

  9. Don’t try to say “Business as usual” to cover up what Google’s doing, they’re bullying developers to cut themselves in on the profit. if Apple just started doing this (which they already do), you’d be writing so many snide comments on how horrible they are. 

    1. Thing is, Apple takes 30% of the sale price.  

      Wallet takes 1.9-2.9%.  Using Paypal is the same fees as Wallet (actually, the lowest bracket, of 1.9%, hits sooner in Wallet).  So, yes, they make developers use their service over Paypal, but not at additional costs to the developers.  

    2. Bullying what developers? If developers think they can do better without google wallet, they can have their apps outside the Market. For example, if you want to buy Pimlical, you go to his website and use Paypal ( When the youtube downloader (tubemate) was off the market, I was able to get it from slideme and I didn’t have to void my phone’s warranty!

  10. This is completely unrelated but I just saw a commercial for IE9. With dubstep. What has the world come to?

  11. Plarket love it that should of been the new name of the Plarket

  12. I REALLY hope this is untrue.

    Little things here and there have contributed to Google slowly losing my trust and respect (they have plenty of both), this would put a real dent in my respect for them.

    Google have been and are ‘generally’ known for being open and “not evil”, however they seem to be moving away from this stance.

    I expected it would happen eventually, once they had everyones data and knew people better than they’re own friends/family.
    gonna have to start moving my data away from them ‘somehow’. if this story’s right.

    1. Google has pulled many honest apps and developer accounts from the market just like apple has and really screwed over the lives of many people.   They do not answer emails, they do not reply why, there isn’t even a hint as to what you did wrong other than links to all of their terms of use, service, contracts, etc.  I should know as I am one of those developers who invested more than a year full time into a company they decided to just ban without any reason…   they are quickly becoming evil!

  13. Wait, I don’t see Microsoft or Apple giving options for their respect stores. Come on people stop the nonsense

  14. I don’t see a major problem here.  Yes, you could say Google is trying to bully you but it’s THEIR system.  It makes sense for them to have everyone using their system use their checkout system.  In addition, it keeps everything in one ecosystem.   Is Google overcharging compared to other payments?  Does Google wallet keep your money longer before releasing it to you?  Is it any more difficult to use?  Is it unsecure?  I’m having a hard time seeing how this is a bad thing besides the fact that they are requiring you to use their payment system.  And on a positive note, it may be able to be more integrated into Android and apps in the future making it a better option.  
    Google is not evil, Google is a company that is looking out for their own interests.  I understand it, it’s a smart move on their part.  Google looks out for our interests alot more than any other company I know and they do it for free to us.  So settle down, look at it from their stand point and weigh the pros and cons.  I think you will find that there are more pros and pretty much no cons.  Could Google later on raise their rates?  Sure, but that can be said about alot of services.  
    Personally, I like Google wallet and having everything consolidated in one place.  

  15. Android Market = Play Store , not Google Play, not Play Market or any other combos I’ve recently seen.

    1. Well technically it is the Google Play Store. Google Play and Play Store are both suitable shortened names. On Android, the app is called “Google Play Store”, but the icon is labeled as “Play Store”. On the web, the service is called “Google Play”.


      1. First we had the app, it was called Android Market. You got the stuff there. THEN came the web version. 

        So I believe the name on the phone is the correct one and should replace the “Android Market”.

  16. paypal is ebay company, does ebay allow any other email payment services other than paypal, the answer is No. so why shouldnt google do it?

  17. It’s Play Store, not Google Play…

  18. This is all done for the customer.  It’s really annoying to have a Google Wallet account, and buy an app with it, only to have to sign up for some other service (or enter a credit card number directly) to buy a level pack in that same game.

  19. There are really two separate arguments here.  The first is does Google have the right to do this and is it unfair.  The answer here is simple.  Yes they do and business doesn’t have to be fair.

    The second is about whether this is in line with what Google has projected as its public image.  They’ve always paid lip service to being open and demanding others be so, as well.  Clearly this isn’t open.  I’ve never really considered corporations “evil”, so I’ve always found Google’s “not evil” claims to be pandering, at best.  As they’ve grown out of being an advertising based company (who’s only real customers were other companies) to one that sells actual products to the public, they’re seeing that such an “open” style doesn’t really suit the business model.

    I for one look forward to a less arrogant and condescending Google.

  20. i dont think the “force” part is a bad thing, it will ensure wallet gets used an devs set good examples for users. this way someone has the knowledge and if google didnt do this, apple might, and that’s called a competitive advantage. plus it’s a good service anyways

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