Date: 19.01.2024

by Mateusz Mazur

Google Play Expands Real Money Game Support with New Global Policy

Google has taken a significant step in the Real Money Game (RMG) apps sector by announcing its plan to support more RMG apps this year.

This initiative, as detailed in a blog post by Google’s Director of Global Trust and Safety Partnerships, Karan Gambhir, indicates a strategic shift in the tech giant’s approach to RMG, including game types and operators beyond existing licensing frameworks.

Pilot Programs Leading to Policy Change

Google’s decision follows successful pilot programs for RMG apps in Rummy and Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS). These pilots, which gathered positive feedback from users and developers, have been instrumental in shaping this new policy direction. The learnings from these initiatives have paved the way for a more inclusive RMG app framework on Google Play.

Scheduled for 2024, Google Play’s expanded RMG framework will be available to app developers in India, Mexico, and Brazil. This expansion is part of a broader plan to extend support to additional countries, marking a significant move in the global gaming and gambling landscape.

India’s Grace Period and New Policy Implementation

In India, the Google Play Pilot Program for DFS and Rummy will continue until June 30, 2024, under a ‘grace period.’ Post this date, the new policy will take effect, allowing developers to distribute a broader range of RMG apps in compliance with updated policies and local laws.

Similarly, in Mexico, the DFS pilot program will conclude on June 30, 2024. After this date, developers will be permitted to distribute RMG apps to Mexican audiences, adhering to local market laws.

RMG developers have been briefed about a potential update in the service fee model by Google Play. This update aims to reflect the value provided by the platform and sustain the Android and Play ecosystems. The new service fee structure will be developed in collaboration with developers, considering the unique economics of RMG games.

Emphasis on Brazil’s Market in 2024

A significant focus of this policy change is on Brazil, a market undergoing considerable changes in its gambling and gaming laws. With the launch of its federal sports betting regime in 2024, Brazil represents a crucial market for RMG developers and operators.

Google encourages RMG developers, both existing and prospective, to prepare for these impending policy changes. This move is expected to facilitate developers’ readiness for the new landscape and policy environment in the RMG space.

Our Comment on the Article

Google Play’s expansion into the RMG apps market, especially focusing on Brazil, signifies a major shift in the digital gaming industry. This strategic move not only reflects Google’s adaptability to market demands but also highlights the growing significance of RMG in the global gaming ecosystem.

As Brazil prepares to launch its federal sports betting regime, Google Play’s policy change aligns perfectly with the evolving legal and regulatory framework, opening new avenues for RMG developers. This expansion demonstrates Google’s commitment to fostering a diverse and dynamic gaming environment, while ensuring compliance with local regulations and promoting responsible gaming practices.