Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?

Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?


Reports suggest that the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing is building an indigenous App Store to challenge Google and Apple’s duopoly

The new App Store could be made a mandatorily pre-installed feature for Android phones sold in India

Demands for an Indian App Store have grown from India’s tech and internet entrepreneurs, who have opposed Google’s Play Store policies

The call for self-reliance is growing in India’s startup ecosystem. The entire week, internet entrepreneurs have been lobbying on Twitter to press for an Indian App Store, one that could negate the Google-Apple duopoly. The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) even called for a huddle to discuss these concerns and decide upon a future course of action. If sources are to be believed, the government has taken notice of these concerns and is moving to build such a platform where mobile applications could be listed. 

On Thursday (October 1), ET NOW, citing sources, posted on Twitter that the Indian government was planning to create an indigenous App Store, as an alternative to Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store. 

ET NOW’s tweet mentioned that the new App Store would be developed by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing, an autonomous scientific society operating under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). 

Further, the tweet read that the government would consider making its homegrown App Store a mandatory pre-installed feature on all Android phones. 

Last month, the Paytm app was pulled up by Google, with the latter claiming that some of the features on the app were violating the Play Store policies on gambling and real money gaming. On October 1, Inc42 reported that Google had also issued notices to food delivery startups Zomato and Swiggy, informing them that the gamification of certain features on their mobile applications was violative of the Play Store policies on gambling. 

Since then, calls have grown among Indian startup founders about the negative effects stemming from the Google-Apple duopoly, with both companies running the biggest app stores and dictating rules and policies for the same. 

In its policies, Google requires Play Store-listed applications that sell digital goods, to use Google Play’s billing system for in-app purchases. On every such purchase made by users on the app, Google will charge a 30% commission. The company recently informed that these policies would come into effect from January next year.

Founders of Indian startups have uniformly opposed Google’s 30% commission policy. 

It is reported that the proposed ‘Made in India’ App Store wouldn’t charge any such commission for in-app purchases from app developers. The new App Store could be a refurbished version of the government’s existing Mobile Seva App Store, which hosts applications for Android, Windows, and iOS devices. The apps listed on the Mobile Seva App Store are those developed and operated by government agencies for the delivery of public services, such as Aarogya Setu. 

Among the other current options for an Indian App Store, there’s App Bazaar, an app marketplace for users of Indus OS, India’s first indigenous smartphone operating system.

Tech Entrepreneurs Ask For Indian App Store

India’s internet entrepreneurs have been busy petitioning the government’s top functionaries on Twitter for an Indian App Store. 

On September 29, Angel investor Mohandas Pai tweeted “Yes, we need an Indian App Store”. 

On the same day, Vishwas Patel, founder, CCAvenues and chairman of Payments Council Of India, tweeted, “Just because Google owns the gate and the gateway to the digital ecosystem of this country, they should not act arbitrarily and enforce their rules and regulations which are contrary to our country’s laws,” 

Speaking to TechCrunch, Vishal Gondal, the founder of fitness startup GOQii, said that an alternative app store would immensely help the Indian app ecosystem.

The sentiment was echoed by Arvind Gupta, a founding member of Indian Software Product Industry Roundtable (iSPIRT), who termed Google’s move an example of digital monopoly.

Razorpay CEO and co-founder Harshil Mathur tweeted, “India needs a local app store long term else 30% tax will eat up most businesses, is anyone trying to build one?”

You have reached your limit of free stories
Become An Inc42 Plus Member

Become a Startup Insider in 2024 with Inc42 Plus. Join our exclusive community of 10,000+ founders, investors & operators and stay ahead in India’s startup & business economy.

Unlock 60% OFF
Cancel Anytime
Unlock 50% OFF
Cancel Anytime
Already A Member?
Discover Startups & Business Models

Unleash your potential by exploring unlimited articles, trackers, and playbooks. Identify the hottest startup deals, supercharge your innovation projects, and stay updated with expert curation.

Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?-Inc42 Media
How-To’s on Starting & Scaling Up

Empower yourself with comprehensive playbooks, expert analysis, and invaluable insights. Learn to validate ideas, acquire customers, secure funding, and navigate the journey to startup success.

Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?-Inc42 Media
Identify Trends & New Markets

Access 75+ in-depth reports on frontier industries. Gain exclusive market intelligence, understand market landscapes, and decode emerging trends to make informed decisions.

Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?-Inc42 Media
Track & Decode the Investment Landscape

Stay ahead with startup and funding trackers. Analyse investment strategies, profile successful investors, and keep track of upcoming funds, accelerators, and more.

Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?-Inc42 Media
Will We Have A ‘Made In India’ App Store Soon?-Inc42 Media
You’re in Good company