Kakao says emoji subscription purchases fell by a third due to Google’s new in-app policy – TechCrunch

Parent company Kakao said the number of emoji subscription purchases on South Korean messaging app KakaoTalk fell by a third from last year. It blames Google’s new in-app billing policy, which forces apps to use the Android manufacturer’s own payment system.

KakaoTalk’s Emojis Plus subscription service, which costs around $3.80 per month, gives users access to unlimited emojis. TechCrunch report in june that Korean app developers and content providers will see their paid subscription fees and service fees increase due to the recent change in Google’s Play market causing a 15-year increase in commission fees 30%.

Kakao CEO Whon Namkoong said that the negative impact from Google’s new payment policy was “inevitable”, adding that the number of KakaoTalk emoji purchases had decreased after Google launched a new payment policy in June this year.

“From the user’s point of view, due to Google’s new in-app billing policy, [digital goods] Namkoong said. “As a result, if you look at [KakoTalk’s] Emojis Plus [subscription] services, the number of new users has dropped to a third of what we saw during the year. “

Kakao Namkoong said.

“We are planning to run a promotion for our users, using Google in-app payments, and also for our subscribers to ensure that we minimize the impact,” he said. in-app payment verbs in the second half of the year.

The US tech giant implemented changes to its in-app payments system this June to charge for transactions that spill from non-game apps and other digital goods. Other digital options include over-the-top (OTT), music streaming, web cartoons, digital book apps and more. Non-game apps, prior to the change, were allowed to direct consumers to external sources of payment through in-app links.

Google said earlier this year in a blog post that “all developers selling digital goods and services in their apps are required to use the Google Play payment system” and state that apps that use external payment links will be removed from the Google Play Store starting June to comply with Google’s new payment system.

Kakao operates two businesses: the platform business (Kakao Talk, Kakao Mobility, Kakao Pay) and the content business (Kakao Games, Kakao Webtoons and Melon music streaming). The South Korean internet company posted second-quarter revenue of $1.3 billion (1.82 trillion WON), up 34.8% year-on-year, and net income of $77.3 million ($101. 2 billion WON) for the quarter, down 68%. from a year earlier.

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