Google can't remove apps that link to external payments in S. Korea

by IANS |

Seoul, April 7 (IANS) Tech giant Google will be violating South Korean law if it pushes through with its plan to remove apps linking to external payment methods, the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) said in a new legal guidance.

Last year, the country passed a law that requires major app stores to accept alternative payment methods, and Google readily agreed to comply, reports Engadget.

It allowed developers to offer an alternative in-app billing system to live alongside its own.

Google still collects a cut for payments made through that alternative billing system, though, and it is only 4 per cent lower than the commission the company collects for payments made through its own system.

If the typical service fee for a purchase is 15 per cent, then Google collects 11 per cent instead. For ebooks, it collects a 6 per cent commission instead of 10, the report said.

Korean developers were not happy, and as The Register and The Wall Street Journal report, they responded by linking out to third-party payment systems to avoid paying Google's fees.

The company had already blocked them from being able to update their apps and it warned them that their apps will be removed from the Play Store if they continue to offer external links by June 1.

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