Google lowers Play Store fees for more apps amid scrutiny from regulators

Google Play Store
Google Play Store (Image credit: Joe Maring / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Google has announced that it is changing its developer Play Store fee structure.
  • All subscriptions on Google Play will have reduced fees from 30% to 15% on day one.
  • Some services like ebooks and music streaming apps will be eligible for as low as 10%.

Google announced some changes to its Play Store fee structure on Thursday that should benefit app developers and is likely put more money in their pockets.

The company states that starting January 1, 2022, all subscription-based apps on the Play Store will have a reduced service fee, from 30% to 15%. Google says the change was made after acknowledging that while subscriptions "have become one of the fastest growing models for developers," they still face challenges with consumer churn.

This contrasts the current model, which charges 30% from the start and drops it to 15% after the first year.

Additionally, Google is making changes to the Play Media Experience program, which will make ebooks and music streaming services eligible for even lower Play Store fees — as low as 10%. The lower fee is to help recognize "industry economics of media content verticals and make Google Play work better for developers and the communities of artists, musicians and authors they represent."

The changes come as Google faces increased scrutiny over its app store developer fees. A multistate lawsuit claims that Google unfairly uses its dominance to impose a high service fee for apps on the best Android phones and that it's "squeezing the lifeblood out of millions of small businesses that are only seeking to compete."

Recently, South Korea ruled that Google and Apple cannot force developers to use their in-house payment systems.

Meanwhile, Google claims that 99% of apps on its platform already qualified for its reduced 15% service fee and has made changes to its fee structure this year to help developers, introducing a program in March that cut the standard 30% in half for the first million in revenue.

Derrek Lee
News Editor

Derrek is a long-time Nokia and LG fanboy who loves astronomy, videography, and sci-fi movies. When he's not working, he's most likely working out or smoldering at the camera.