Google lowers fees from subscription in its app store

Google lowers fees from subscription in its app store
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Google is planning to lower fees it charges subscription services on its app store amid criticism from developers and lawmakers, Bloomberg News reported.

The company announced Thursday that starting Jan. 1, its Play Store will charge third-party app developers a 15 percent commission. 

Apps that aren’t subscription based will still have to share 30 percent of their revenue, but it will drop to 15 percent for the first $1 million in revenue. 

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Google previously charged subscription apps a 30 percent commission for the first year, then 15 percent afterward, according to Bloomberg. 

This comes as critics argue Google's and fellow competitor Apple’s app stores have grown too powerful, causing developers to abide by the restrictive rules. 

Apple’s own app business is much larger than Google’s since its gains more revenue from iPhone customers. 

Google has made several attempts to expand its business on its Android products, including creating a line of premium Pixel smartphones, Bloomberg reported. 

Google’s vice president of Product Management Sameer Samat said in a statement that the new change is in part due to understanding the struggles facing subscription developers.

“Digital subscriptions have become one of the fastest growing models for developers but we know that subscription businesses face specific challenges in customer acquisition and retention. We’ve worked with our partners in dating, fitness, education and other sectors to understand the nuances of their businesses,” Samat said. 

Google also launched a “Play Media Experience” program for select developers that charged a variable rate below 15 percent depending on the media type, Bloomberg noted.