An ongoing Epic Games lawsuit against Alphabet Inc. regarding the app store fees for purchases has revealed that Google allows Spotify Technology, the company behind the popular music streaming platform, to avoid paying the commission fees. Although Google tried to keep the numbers private, the head of global partnerships, Don Harrison, had to reveal them on the stand.
Here’s How Much Spotify Pays For In-App Purchases
The new testimony reveals that Spotify pays zero percent commission when users buy subscriptions through the platform. On the other hand, if users choose to perform the transaction via Google, the company charges a four percent commission. In comparison, the common commission percentage is 15 percent. Previously, Google confirmed that it gave Spotify a better deal on the Play Store fees, but it wasn’t ready to reveal the exact percentage.
Google Considered Spotify’s Popularity For The Special Deal
Harrison also says that Spotify’s popularity got the platform a deal on the fees. He also mentions that if Google doesn’t have Spotify working properly through Play Services, people won’t buy Android phones. Given that there are plenty of other music streaming platforms, including Amazon Music, Pandora, and even YouTube Music, the statement doesn’t reflect the best of Google.
According to an acknowledgment of the statement received by The Verge, a small pool of developers may have different service fees “as part of a broader partnership that includes substantial financial investments.” These partnerships enable Google to bring more users to Android and, subsequently, explore more apps on the Google Play store, which could compensate for the rebate in the long run.
This Strengthens Epic Games’ Argument In The Lawsuit
In the past, Spotify has complained about the app store commission fees. In fact, it was a part of the Coalition for App Fairness, a group that included Epic Games. Moreover, facts about how Google negotiates different rates for developers and how the company, in the past, has tried to acquire a huge stake in Fortnite’s creator could strengthen Epic Games’ argument.