Google Expands Real-Money Gaming on Play Store

Google Expands Real-Money Gaming on Play Store

Posted: April 15, 2024 | Updated: April 15, 2024

On January 11, 2024, Google announced that it would expand the support for Real-Money Gaming (RMG) apps on Google Play. After several years of test programs, Google Play will permanently offer more RMG apps in nations like Brazil, Mexico, and India. Plans are also in place to expand into more areas. The change­ follows successful trial programs and positive input from users and de­velopers. More game­ categories and operators will be include­d beyond current license­d frameworks. By June, Google aims to make the­ expanded real-mone­y gaming support available to develope­rs in Brazil, Mexico, and India.

This revised approach trie­s balancing user protection with new busine­ss opportunities worldwide for deve­lopers. It also lets deve­lopers keep their products on Google Play after their e­arlier trial involvement with re­al-money gaming in Mexico and India.

Key Takeaways
  • Google Expands RMG Access: With aspirations for worldwide expansion, Google extends Play Store support for real-money gambling, starting in Mexico, Brazil, and India.
  • Success in the RMG Industry: Successful RMG apps require developers to follow Google’s guidelines, comprehend local markets, monitor cost structures, and use Google’s resources.
  • Comprehending Local Regions: To successfully enter and expand in various regions, apps must be customized to local tastes and regulatory needs.
  • Using Google’s Resources: In the real-money gaming sector, developers can use Google’s tools and resources for marketing, insights, and improving user experience.

Google’s Policy Shift: Expanding Real-Money Gaming Access and Opportunities

Google's Policy Shift: Expanding Real-Money Gaming Access and Opportunities

Real-money games like Rummy have become increasingly popular, prompting Google to adjust its Play Store policy. Karan Gambhir, director of Global Trust and Safety Partnerships at Google, explained in a blog post that, to accommodate developer innovation while ensuring user safety, they’ve conducted various pilot programs to explore how to support more RMG operators and game types. Gambhir highlighted India as an example, noting the eagerness of developers in the country to expand RMG apps to more Android users.

With plans for further international expansion, Google revealed that the extended real-money gaming program will debut in June in Mexico, Brazil, and India. Google is also considering a different service cost structure for in-app purchases and subscriptions. The All India Gaming Federation (AIGF) CEO, Roland Landers, praised Google’s choice and described it as progressive.

According to industry executives, real-money gaming companies like Games 24×7 or Dream11 have had access to the Play Store until now because their games fall under the fantasy and rummy categories.

online money gaming

Google launched a test program in India in September 2022, permitting gaming companies to offer rummy and daily fantasy sports (DFS) apps for one year via the Play Store. This pilot program was extended until January 15 of last year, and it has now been extended until June 30 of this year, in line with the implementation of the new policy.

Google is also contemplating a new service fee model for real-money games. Currently, it charges a service fee of 15-30% on in-app purchases and subscriptions. Developers opting for an alternative billing system pay 11-26% to Google. However, actual gaming firms are currently exempt from commission payments because the project is in the pilot stage. It remains uncertain what kind of new service fee Google will impose on real-money gaming apps after June 30.

Previously, Google’s policy only permitted RMG apps that adhered to established governmental regulatory frameworks. The Play Store relied on these regulations to determine whether an app was approved or rejected. This approach meant that Google didn’t allow legally permissible games but needed explicit regulations governing their availability.

Soon, Google Play will expand its support to include RMG game types and operators not covered by existing licensing frameworks, provided they are otherwise legal. This expansion will increase RMG availability in more countries. Developers must comply with all existing local guidelines and Google’s policies.

Only RMG apps that have been around long enough to be subject to regulations are presently accepted in the Play Store. This covers Daily Fantasy Sports, Lotteries, Online Sports Betting, and Casino Games. Adult age restriction and geo-gating, which limits the availability of apps to areas where they are permitted, are examples of current safety precautions. State-by-state restrictions govern availability in the US, and a forthcoming reform will not allow apps that break the law.

Gambhir stated that their support is in line with this approach and is hopeful that it would substantially impact India’s online gaming market, which generates more than 70% of its revenue via “Pay to Play” platforms.

He’s optimistic that this initiative will pave the way for responsible innovation, significantly broadening the choices available to consumers in India. It’s expected to serve as a pivotal boost for MSMEs and budding developers/platforms, enabling them to hold their ground against well-established players. This could lead to lower costs in areas like user acquisition. The anticipation of collaborating with Google to refine its policy framework is high, with hopes pinned on fostering a policy to ensure fair growth opportunities within India’s online gaming sector.

By June, the industry anticipates clarity on regulations concerning online gaming firms, with potential notifications from the government regarding self-regulatory organizations (SROs). Google’s policy adjustment unlocks new opportunities for developers and advertisers and serves as a gateway to untapped markets and revenue streams.

However, expansion necessitates strict adherence to Google’s evolving policies, especially local laws. The potential entry into the US market could further accelerate the industry’s growth trajectory. The global real money skill games market was valued at $15 billion in 2022 and is projected to reach $48 billion by 2031, with a CAGR of 13.92%. This figure is expected to soar with the integration of RMG apps on the Play Store.

Critical Considerations for Success in the RMG Industry

Critical Considerations for Success in the RMG Industry

RMG game producers should plan ahead for this expansion in light of the announcements. Gaining a competitive edge in the changing landscape will depend heavily on being ahead of legislative revisions and market developments. These are essential tactics that developers should think about:

  • Adhering to Google’s Existing Developer Policies

Compliance with Google’s developer policies is the foundational step for companies aiming to expand their apps’ reach. This compliance is not just a formality but a crucial factor in unlocking access to a broader audience and catalyzing growth. Considerations such as age restrictions, geographical limitations, and communication safeguards are essential.

For instance, it is advisable to implement age-gating to restrict RMG to adults and use geo-gating to offer RMG apps solely in regions where they are legally permitted. The potential risk of being banned from the Play Store before even starting underscores the importance of these considerations.

  • Grasping Local Market Dynamics

Every market exhibits distinct traits, consumer preferences, and legal landscapes. Developers are encouraged to delve into the cultural, gaming inclinations, and regulatory frameworks specific to countries such as Brazil, Mexico, and India, where they plan to launch initially.

Acquiring this insight is pivotal for tailoring apps to resonate with local preferences and ensuring they align with the legal requirements of each region.

  • Navigating Google’s Evolving Service Fee Models

While the specifics are yet to be fully outlined, it’s important for companies to monitor the changing fee structures related to their presence on the Play Store, especially for RMG services.

Google is positioning itself to capitalize on the lucrative RMG sector by introducing service fees that could significantly impact profit margins. Staying informed and adaptable to these evolving fee models is essential for maintaining a profitable and compliant presence on the platform.

  • Utilizing Google’s Resources

Google provides a wealth of resources and tools designed to assist developers in refining their apps. These resources span user analytics, advertising services, and tools for tracking app performance. By taking advantage of these offerings, developers can gain valuable insights into their audience, fine-tune their marketing strategies, and improve the overall user experience.

About Google

Google LLC, a key subsidiary of Alphabet Inc., specializes in internet search and advertising services. This American tech giant focuses on search engine technology, consumer electronics, artificial intelligence (AI), and cloud computing. It was founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, two American computer scientists pursuing their PhDs at Stanford University. Initially named “BackRub,” the company soon adopted the name “Google”—a play on the word “googol,” which signifies a 1 followed by 100 zeros, symbolizing the vast array of search outcomes the engine aims to offer.

Google boasts an extensive range of products and services, including Google Chrome, Google Search, Google Calendar, Google Docs, Google Meet, Google Photos, Google Finance, Google Drive, Google News, Google Play Books, Google Ad Manager, Google Earth, AdMob, Google Play, AdSense, Google Maps, Google Groups, Gmail, and YouTube, among others. Google’s headquarters are located in California, USA, with a global footprint that spans the Americas, Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.


Google’s recent announcement to expand support for Real Money Gaming (RMG) apps on the Play Store marks a significant shift in its policy. With pilot programs paving the way, this expansion will offer developers in India, Mexico, Brazil, and beyond new avenues for innovation and growth.

As Google prepares to roll out these changes, developers must prioritize compliance with evolving policies, understand local market dynamics, adapt to changing service fee models, and leverage Google’s resources. By doing so, they can position themselves for success in an industry poised for substantial growth, unlocking new opportunities and revenue streams in the global RMG market.

Share This Post

Save Time, Money, & Resources

Categories: Latest News, Financial News, igaming

Get Started

Ready for the ultimate credit card processing experience? Fill out this form!

Contact HMS

Ready for the ultimate credit card processing experience? Ask us your questions here.