Google allows real money gaming apps on the Play Store

Tech giant Google plans to allow real-money gaming on the Play Store, which will be approved by self-regulators once the government rolls out the new regulatory framework for gaming platforms.

This comes after Google conducted a year-long pilot to allow users in India to have fantasy sports and rummy apps available on Google Play.

These apps are still available for download via Google Play as they were part of a pilot project by the tech giant. The pilot project, which started in September 2022, will end later this month.

“We intend to enable distribution on Google Play for all Self-Regulatory Bodies (SRB) verified online real money games that comply with our policies. “We are closely following any developments in this regard to determine next steps and timelines,” a Google spokesman said.

Google also updated its support page to indicate that no new apps will be added to the pilot after the pilot ends. For existing apps that are already part of the pilot program, a transition period until January 15, 2024 will be granted on Google Play.

India’s gaming sector

It comes at a time when the real money gambling sector in India is coming under pressure due to the new 28 percent GST at full face value. In another session on August 2, the constitutional body clarified that the tax will be levied on players’ deposits to play a game, thereby avoiding repeated taxes if they use their won money to play more games.

In April, MeitY reported new gaming-related amendments to the IT Law 2021 that allow multiple Self-Regulatory Organizations (SROs) to determine whether or not a real-money game involving money is legal in India.

Players are still awaiting more clarity from the GST Council as they deal with layoffs and closures. The Mobile Premier League (MPL) has laid off 350 staff, citing the additional tax burden. Spartan Poker laid off 125 employees and Hike Rush Gaming Universe also reduced its workforce by 22 percent. Fantok has announced a temporary suspension of its operations. Google allows real money gaming apps on the Play Store

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