Tinder Owner Match Group Goes After Google For Its Play Store Policies

Bangkok, Thailand - July 22, 2019 : iPhone user touching Tinder logo on iPhone screen to open the app.
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The company behind popular match-making app Tinder, Match Group, is taking Google to court as it claims that the tech giant is “illegally monopolising the market for marketing apps.”

In their complaint, Match Group, who are also the creators of other similar applications to Tinder, such as OkCupid, Hinge and Plenty of Fish, stress that the payment system in the Google Play store, which is used by all Android devices, only allows them to take a small cut of revenues, with the majority of the earnings going to Google itself, violating US federal and state laws.

Google pointed out in 2020 that it requires all apps that use its platform for digital transactions to also use its own billing system and that these changes would become obligatory by last September, a deadline that was later extended to the upcoming June.

Match Group stated that Google has threatened to remove all their apps from the Play Store if they do not comply with these policy changes, adding that the company has already rejected some of the updates that they have made to their apps which sustain the current payment system.

“Ten years ago, Match Group was Google’s partner. We are now its hostage,” the company says in its complaint. “Google lured app developers to its platform with assurances that we could offer users a choice over how to pay for the services they want but once it monopolized the market for Android app distribution with Google Play by riding the coattails of the most popular app developers, Google sought to ban alternative in-app payment processing services so it could take a cut of nearly every in-app transaction on Android.”

The Tinder owner goes on to stress that Google is attempting to impose a “tax” on users which will allegedly “come out of the pockets of consumers in the form of higher prices and the revenue that app developers would and should otherwise earn for the sale of their services.”

However, Google pointed out that Match Group is one of the few companies that pay such a low commission (15 percent) rate to have their apps featured on the Play Store, while at the same time their policies permit the matchmaking app developer to relocate to other sources if they do not wish to comply with the changes.

This case could be aligned with the well-known lawsuit of Apple vs Epic which shook the entire industry, as the games developer claimed that the US company was engaging in “anti-competitive behaviour” in asking for a 30 percent cut from all in-game purchases of the titles that were on its online store.

 

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