Google was forced to stash $90 million specifically for a class-action lawsuit being brought forth by Android app developers. Much like the previous row developers had with Apple, Google is also accused of implementing anticompetitive policies affecting developers’ earnings on the Google Play Store.
ZDNet pointed us in the direction of a press release from the law firm representing the stifled developers. Developers who published apps on Google Play and earned revenue in the amount of $2m or less between 2016-2021 may be eligible to be part of a settlement lawsuit, according to the law firm Hagens Berman. Around 48k developers could benefit from the class-action suit per a statement from Steve Berman:
“Today, nearly 48,000 hardworking app developers are receiving the just payment they deserve for their work product – something Google sought to profit from, hand over fist. Following our win against Apple for similar conduct, we think this pair of settlements sends a strong message to Big Tech: the law is watching, and even the most powerful companies in the world are accountable when they stifle competition.”
The complaint was originally filed in 2020, where the plaintiffs alleged that Google:
“maintains and reinforces its monopoly status in the field by banning the distribution of other Android app-sale clients in Google Play….As Google well knows, hardly any members of its enormous Google Play install base will go to this trouble, if they even know such a process may be available. And still others will heed Google’s security warnings and not go through with the installation.14 No wonder app developers feel bound to sell in Google Play, whatever the cost.“
As with most class-action suits, the plaintiffs usually don’t make out with a lot of money in the end. Hagens Berman breaks down the settlement numbers stating that some members may receive $200k with the minimum payment being $250.
[Source: ZDNet] [Source: Hagens Berman]