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Paytm Back on Play Store After Being Removed For Violating Policy

Paytm had earlier said it was told by Google that the ‘Paytm Cricket League’ feature violated Play Store’s policies.

Updated
Tech News
3 min read
Paytm has been removed from the Google Playstore citing policy violations. 
i

Hours after Google removed the Paytm app from its Play Store for repeatedly violating its anti-gambling policies, it was back on the platform.

“And we’re back,” the mobile payments and financial services company tweeted on Friday, 18 September.

Paytm Back on Play Store After Being Removed For Violating Policy
(Screenshot)

With over 50 million monthly active users, Paytm competes with Google Pay as a digital payments option.

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Snapshot

WHAT WAS PAYTM’S VIOLATION?

In a statement released earlier, Paytm had said that it had received communication from Google that their ‘Paytm Cricket League’ feature violated Google Play Store’s policies.

It added that the app has removed the cashback component of the feature in an effort to meet the Play Store policy requirements.

“We continue to work with Google to restore the app. We assure all our users that their balances and linked accounts are 100 percent safe. Our services are fully functional on all existing apps and you can continue enjoying Paytm like before.”
Paytm 

The app also took to Twitter to inform its users that their money is in safe hands.

Paytm Back on Play Store After Being Removed For Violating Policy
(Photo Courtesy: Paytm/Twitter)

WHAT IS GOOGLE’S POLICY?

Google does not allow gambling or unregulated gambling apps on the Play Store, especially those that facilitate sports gambling.

“We have these policies to protect users from potential harm. When an app violates these policies, we notify the developer of the violation and remove the app from Google Play until the developer brings the app into compliance.”
Suzanne Frey, Vice President, Product, Android Security and Privacy to TechCrunch.

The app was removed from the platform because of the addition of the fantasy cricket tournament that the company recently included, which violates Google Play policies, the search giant confirmed.

Not just the app, Google Play has pulled the Paytm First Games app that also included the same fantasy cricket features with real money betting.

WHAT ABOUT OTHER FANTASY/BETTING APPS?

According to a TechCrunch report, Google said that Paytm repeatedly violated its policies.

One of the prime examples of this policy is that Google doesn't allow Dream11 fantasy sports app to be available on the Play Store, as it violates the Android-maker’s gambling policies. However, Dream11 is available for smartphone users via third-party websites.

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This move was also a preemptive attempt by Google to warn other developers on the platform to be wary of the policies, especially when a major cricket tournament such as the Indian Premier League 2020 (IPL) is right around the corner.

Sports betting is illegal in India, which is why most of the apps promote themselves as skill-based apps rather than gambling tools.

The report also said that Google had asked streaming platform Disney+ Hotstar, which is responsible for streaming the IPL, to display a warning before running ads on fantasy sports apps.

WHAT DID PAYTM HAVE TO SAY?

In an official statement on its blog on Friday, Paytm stated that it had launched the ‘Paytm Cricket League’ which allows users to get player stickers after each transaction, collect them and receive Paytm Cashback.

“Today afternoon, we received communication from Google that they are suspending our app because they believe this to be a violation of their Play Store policies on gambling,” the blog stated.

“While it is clear that all activities on Paytm are completely lawful, we have temporarily removed the cashback component in an effort to meet the Play Store policy requirements,” it added.

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