Match Group Isn’t Dating Google Anymore
Dating operator Match Group (MTCH) – Get Match Group, Inc. Report has had it with Google.
The company said it’s suing the main operating subsidiary of Alphabet (GOOGL) – Get Alphabet Inc. Class A Report for anti-competitive behavior over new rules requiring it to use Google’s billing system in order to remain available in the Google Play app store.
“Ten years ago, Match Group was Google’s partner,” the company wrote in its 91-page lawsuit. “We are now its hostage.”
The problem, from Match Group’s point of view, is that Google is forcing app developers to adopt its payment systems in order to remain available on the Google Play app store.
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Google Play is effectively the only source of apps used on phones and tablets using the Android operating system.
“It is conditioning app availability on Google Play with exclusive use of its own in-app payment processing product, Google Play Billing,” Match Group said in the lawsuit, filed in San Francisco. That means Google can charge excessive prices “and monetize the personal data of billions of digital app users,” the lawsuit said.
A Google spokesperson responded to the suit by calling it a “continuation of Match Group’s self-interested campaign to avoid paying for the significant value they receive from the mobile platforms they’ve built their business on,” MarketWatch reported.
The dispute is part of a larger battle between app makers and companies – Google and Apple (AAPL) – Get Apple Inc. Report – that control the distribution of the apps on almost all mobile phones and other devices.
Video game maker Epic Games, which developed the Fortnite franchise, has been aggressive in challenging both Google and Apple payment rules. Match has complained of Apple’s rules as well, MarketWatch reported.