Last updated: November 11th, 2022 at 07:10 UTC+01:00
After antitrust allegations against Google in the EU, it announced a first-of-a-kind billing system with Spotify that would allow users to choose an alternative payment method for the music subscription. This billing system was called ‘User Choice Billing’ or, in short, UCB. This was not specifically meant for Spotify but for all other Android apps and their payment systems.
Google has now piloted the program with Spotify as Google Play is bringing the User Choice Billing system to more markets, including the United States. With User Choice Billing, Play Store apps can use their own payment system alongside Google Play. Back in September, Google opened sign-ups for non-gaming apps in the European Economic Area (EEA), Australia, India, Indonesia, and Japan.
Thanks to UCB, Android apps and services can offer a more integrated payment system rather than redirecting users to the web to sign up for a service. With UCB, users are seeing two options to pay for premium on Spotify, i.e., Spotify and Google Play. Users selecting the Google Play option will go through the familiar payment process. On the other hand, those who opt for the Spotify option will be subscribing or paying for their subscription with a credit card form on Spotify.
Not only Spotify but also the famous dating app Bumble has joined the User Choice Billing pilot program. The payment system is expanding in the United States, Brazil, and South Africa. Apps must pay Google the applicable fee, which, per Google, is required to support investments in Android and Google Play. The fee has been reduced to 4% through UCB.
Google added that it will be “working with their teams, and we anticipate their users will begin seeing this choice in-app in select countries in the coming months.”