Weekly News For You To Stay Updated With The App Industry
Every day Google is tussling. This time it’s with internet music company Bandcamp. They seem to have reached a compromise.
In other news, Apple is in talks with EA about a merger and Instagram is out with a fresh look.
Check out all our news this week here:
1. Bandcamp and Google reluctantly agree over in-app payments
Epic Games is back with its lawsuits against Google. How is Epic Games involved in a story about Bandcamp? Because Epic Games acquired the online music service company in March 2022. And through them, they filed a case against Google’s forceful mandate to adopt its own billing system.
This is a serious case because the punishment for non-compliance is excommunication from the Play Store parish.
And according to Bandcamp CEO and co-founder Ethan Diamond, agreeing to what Google wants would mean that they “either pass Google’s fees on to consumers (making Android a less attractive platform for music fans), pass fees on to artists (which we would never do), permanently run our Android business at a loss, or turn off digital sales in the Android app,”.
But Bandcamp has prevailed. They will not be facing the guillotine in Google’s gallows and won’t be de-listed from the Play Store. The new agreement will allow Bandcamp to continue using its current in-app payment gateway which is a win for their Android app.
Bandcamp also said that the 10% they earn through each digital sale will be kept in escrow (an agreement between two people or organizations in which money or property is kept by a third person or organization until a particular condition is met) till the case is resolved.
This is quite similar to the story of Match Group’s lawsuit against Play Store and how Google quickly came to an agreement similar to Bandcamp’s.
It’s time Google allows smaller developers to choose their own in-app payment methods or risk losing them to alternative app distributors.
2. Mobile gaming set to capture 60% of the market share
Well done mobile gamers, you all actually managed to make mobile gaming charge ahead of PC and console gaming.
According to a new report by data.ai, mobile gaming is set to cross $136 billion in consumer spending, way ahead of second-placed console gaming at $42 billion.
The report also stated that mobile games made gaming popular and actually helped expand the gaming market. The fastest-growing age group for mobile spending in the US was Gen X or Baby Boomers (aged 45) and 47% of the 1000 top-grossing games were played by Gen Z users.
Another interesting finding from the report revealed that users are fine with watching ads in return for free services. Naturally, most users want freebies rather than having to pay for them. Even though users don’t mind ads like video and banner ads, they still value their privacy enough to remain skeptical of advertising overall.
3. Apple looking to takeover EA Games
This year has been a year of major takeovers in the gaming industry. First Microsoft acquired Activision Blizzard in January and then Sony acquired Bungie the original creators of Halo the following month.
Now there are whispers of Apple wanting to acquire EA games. There are no official statements yet with even Disney and Amazon reportedly interested.
According to EA spokesperson John Reseburg, these are just “rumors and speculation relating to M&A.”
An acquisition like this could launch Apple into the big leagues of console gaming and it’s not their first foray into the market.
4. Windows 11 based Android app coming to 5 new countries
Earlier this year, Microsoft announced that you can download a third-party app store from its Windows 11 Microsoft Store. To be precise, Microsoft allowed the download of Amazon’s App Store, an alternative Android app store presently available in the US only.
Now it looks like the Windows Subsystem for Android (WSA) will be available in 5 more countries by the end of the year. India is yet to be included in the list of countries, however, it includes countries like Japan, the UK, France, Italy, and Germany.
The availability of an alternative app store on Windows can be a game-changer for other third-party app stores. Because it gives more choice to users and also shows that other app stores apart from Google’s and Apple’s can offer a similar user experience and act as competent app distributors
5. Instagram brings a fresh look to the app
Instagram is bringing a new typeface to the app called “Instagram Sans”. They also made their logo a little bit brighter and are introducing a full-screen marketing layout.
The company said its new typeface was inspired by its logo and squares and circles. Instagram said they “partnered with language experts around the world to adapt the typeface to global scripts including Arabic, Thai, and Japanese. We want to support all of our creators and community members who push culture forward to express themselves fully in any language they choose.”
They also said that the logo was tweaked to make it look more “illuminative and alive”. The full-screen layout is quite similar to the one that TikTok has and may change the way you view posts.
6. Reels now available in a 90-second format
The popular short video format on Instagram is now coming with a 90-second option. India is the fourth country where this feature is available following its release in France, Germany, and Brazil.
Reels is quite popular in India and is a great way for companies and influencers to monetize their content. Instagram has steadily been increasing the duration of Reels from 15, 30, 60, and now 90 seconds.