WinZo challenges Google policy to allow select fantasy, rummy game apps on Play Store

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 20-09-2022 18:59 IST | Created: 20-09-2022 18:59 IST
WinZo challenges Google policy to allow select fantasy, rummy game apps on Play Store
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Indian gaming platform Winzo has sought injunction against Google's pilot project which will allow only select fantasy and rummy apps on its Play Store alleging that the move is ''arbitrary, unfair and restrictive''.

WinZo said that the policy casts doubt over Google's stated position as an intermediary who are obliged to law to maintain platform neutrality.

''WinZO seeks restraint against Google from implementing the arbitrary classification which will impact the reputation of WinZo's business,'' the gaming platform said in a statement.

Google, which earlier removed fantasy gaming apps and rummy games from Play Store, will allow select apps to operate on its platform under a pilot project for a year beginning September 28.

As part of Play Store gambling policies, Google earlier barred online casinos and stopped supporting any unregulated gambling apps that facilitate sports betting, ''including daily fantasy sports in India'' and it had removed several apps which it observed were in violation to the guidelines.

Google Play had said that it is conducting a limited-time pilot programme enabling distribution of daily fantasy sports and rummy apps to users in India by developers incorporated in India in a way that delivers a safe and enjoyable user experience.

WinZo has alleged that Google's policy can lead to distortions in the competitive Indian gaming ecosystem by resulting in unparalleled access to the 2.5 billion monthly active users across 190 countries where the Google Play Store is available.

According to Winzo, Google's ploicy will result in benefiting only a handful of players who are already in monopoly for over a decade and the update is not only seen as anti-competitive but also as a death knell to innovation.

''Every other app store of the country, including the Apple Store, Vivo, Oppo, MI Store, allows all skill gaming products that are protected uniformly under the Constitution of India. Google, however, till date, did not allow any game with a pay to play format on the Google Play Store. It is noteworthy that Google Playstore is the largest app distribution platform owning 97 per cent market share in India, which is an Android-centric market,'' WinZo said.

The gaming platform said while Google would facilitate seamless hassle-free installation of DFS and rummy products from its Play Store without any warning, other skill gaming apps distributed through their websites, would be showing a dire and false warning that app may harm their device when a user would try to download any other pay to play game.

''This is going to be the death of fair market practices and extremely discriminatory for innovative developers working on projects outside DFS and rummy,'' WinZo said.

An email query sent to Google elicited no immediate reply.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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