Google has paid the whole Rs 1,337.76 crore penalty amount issued by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) in the Android case, perhaps the first instance of a Big Tech company paying a fine to Indian regulators as the government works to create a new Digital India Act.
The whole penalty sum has been paid in the Consolidated Fund of India within the 30-day window set by the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT), according to trustworthy sources who spoke to IANS on Tuesday.
In October 2022, the Indian market regulator fined Google for allegedly abusing its dominating position in the Android industry.
Google said earlier this year that it will adhere to the CCI's guidelines for Android.
According to Google, “The CCI's recent directives for Android and Play require us to make significant changes for India, and we've informed the CCI of how we will be complying with their directives,” in a statement.
In order to allow partners to create incompatible or forked variations, Google updated the Android compatibility standards.
Developers may allow customers to choose a different charging method in addition to Google Play's billing method when they buy in-app digital content by using user choice billing.
The modifications followed a Supreme Court court ruling that the CCI's conclusions could not be characterised as “without jurisdiction or with manifest error” and upholding the NCLAT verdict but refusing to provide Google temporary relief.
The panel gave Google seven days to deposit 10% of the Rs 1,337.76 crore penalty levied by the CCI and ordered the NCLAT to rule on Google's appeal by March 31.
Google claimed that the CCI copied and pasted portions of a European court decision without looking at related Indian material.
In a second instance, the CCI fined Google Rs 936.44 crore for abusing its dominant position with regard to its Play Store policy.
The Alliance of Digital India Foundation (ADIF) has demanded that the new policies be put on hold because Google charging an almost 30% service fee to app developers will be a significant blow to the Indian startup ecosystem. This is in response to Google's announcement of implementing its new Google Play payments policy.