- Google has removed the Paytm app from the Play Store.
- It’s one of the largest mobile payment platforms in India.
- Paytm says it’ll be back on the Play Store “very soon.”
Google has pulled the Paytm app from the Play Store citing policy violations. The mobile payments app can no longer be downloaded from the Google Play Store, but if you already have it, it should work just fine.
Paytm is one of India’s most popular, if not the biggest, online payments and money transfer platforms. According to its data, the Paytm app has over 200 million active users, eclipsing the user base of competitors like Google Pay and PhonePe. It’s also the most valued Indian startup with names like Softbank, Berkshire Hathaway, SAIF Partners, and others backing it.
In a blog post released today, Google said that it doesn’t allow online casinos or support any unregulated gambling apps that facilitate sports betting. “This includes if an app leads consumers to an external website that allows them to participate in paid tournaments to win real money or cash prizes, it is a violation of our policies,” the company noted.
The reason for Paytm’s removal?
The Paytm app repeatedly violated these policies, sources familiar with the matter told TechCrunch. The company was apparently promoting fantasy sports betting services on the Paytm app as well as on the Paytm First Games app, both of which have been booted from the Play Store.
Google warned in its blog post that “in the case where there are repeated policy violations, we [Google] may take more serious action which may include terminating Google Play Developer accounts.”
Paytm, meanwhile, has promised that its app will be back very soon. In a tweet, the company assured that “all your money is completely safe and you can continue to enjoy your Paytm app as normal.”
Google has also reportedly asked Disney Plus Hotstar to display a warning before running ads for fantasy sports apps.