In a strategic move to support its presence in the online gaming market, Google has officially announced plans to widen its support for real-money games (RMG) on the Play Store. The tech giant aims to achieve this by allowing a broader spectrum of games in the category, all while adhering to local laws and regulations. This groundbreaking initiative is set to kick off in June, starting with the countries of India, Brazil, and Mexico, with a global rollout planned for the future. Alongside this expansion, Google is also contemplating a new service fee model for subscriptions and in-app purchases.
Support for Google’s decision comes from the All India Gaming Federation, as the company takes a significant step towards embracing Pay to Play skill games on the Play Store. Mr. Roland Landers, CEO of the All India Gaming Federation, expressed his support for this progressive move, highlighting its potential impact on the Indian online gaming industry.
“As the representative body of online gaming in India, we welcome this progressive decision by Google to allow all Pay to Play skill games on the Play Store. We have been advocating the same for and believe that this will give a big boost to the Indian online gaming industry, where over 70 percent of the revenue is generated by Pay to Play platforms,” said Mr. Landers.
The move is seen as a positive step towards responsible innovation and increased choices for Indian consumers. Mr. Landers believes that the decision will particularly benefit Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and new developers/platforms, enabling them to compete with established companies and significantly reducing user acquisition and associated costs.
“We look forward to engaging with Google while it evolves the detailed policy and hope that the policy will be truly inclusive and help democratize online gaming in India,” added Mr. Landers.
The All India Gaming Federation (AIGF), as the apex industry body for online gaming in India, represents a diverse range of online gaming companies, including esports, fantasy gaming, card games, casual gaming, and other formats. With over 100 online gaming companies and a combined user base exceeding 400 million users, AIGF is at the forefront of consulting with policymakers to demonstrate the importance and benefits of recognizing and standardizing its self-regulatory framework. This framework, encapsulated in the Skill Games Charter, has been established by eminent domain experts and is advanced by the All India Skill Gaming Council. AIGF’s efforts over the past six years have played a pivotal role in showcasing the significance of recognizing and standardizing skill gaming in India.