Google pulls India’s Paytm app from Play Store for repeat policy violations – ProWellTech
Google withdrew the popular Indian financial services app Paytm from the Play Store for violating its gambling policies. Paytm it is India’s most valuable startup and boasts over 50 million monthly active users. Its main app, which competes with Google Pay in India, disappeared from the Play Store in the country last Friday.
Google said the Play Store bans online casinos and other unregulated gambling apps that facilitate sports betting in India. Paytm, which promotes the fantasy sports service within its main app, has repeatedly violated Play Store policies, two people familiar with the matter told ProWellTech. Paytm Paytm First Games’ fantasy sports service, also available as a standalone app, has also been withdrawn from the Play Store.
The Android maker, which maintains similar guidelines in most other markets, also noted that if an app takes consumers to an external website that allows them to participate in paid tournaments to win real money or cash prizes. , it is also a violation of its Play Store policies.
ProWellTech has reached out to Paytm for comment, but has not yet received a response. Google’s Pay app currently dominates the payment market in India.
Today’s announcement by Google is also a preemptive attempt by the company to remind other developers of its gambling policies one day before the popular Indian Premier League cricket tournament kicks off.
The previous seasons of IPL, which lasted nearly two months and attract the attention of hundreds of millions of Indians, have seen an increase in apps trying to promote or participate in sports betting.
Sports betting is prohibited in India, but fantasy sports where users select their favorite players and win if their favorite team or players play well are not illegal in most Indian states.
A person familiar with the matter told ProWellTech that Google also asked Disney + Hotstar, one of India’s most popular on-demand video streaming services, to display a warning before running ads on fantasy sports apps.
“We have these policies to protect users from potential harm. When an app violates these policies, we notify the developer of the violation and remove the app from Google Play until the developer makes the app compliant,” wrote Suzanne Frey , Vice President, Product, Android Security and Privacy, in a blog post.
“And in the event that repeated policy violations occur, we could take more serious action which could include closing Google Play developer accounts. Our policies are applied and enforced to all developers consistently,” he added.