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Cryptogambling / Google Play Store changes policy to allow NFT games

Google Play Store changes policy to allow NFT games

Publish Date: 13/07/2023

google play, tags: policy - play.google

Google has changed its policy to allow developers to incorporate NFTs into their games on the Google Play Store.

“Today, we’re pleased to share that we’re updating our policy to open new ways to transact blockchain-based digital content within apps and games on Google Play,” said Google Play group product manager Joseph Mills.

Mills also pointed out that apps must be transparent with users about tokenized digital assets. Per the new regulation, apps should not “glamorize any potential earning from playing or trading activities.” Mills added that the ban includes features like “loot boxes,” where users get randomized blockchain-based items through purchases.

These limitations prevent NFT newcomers from being deceived by misleading tactics that guarantee huge profits from buying tokenized assets. The update allows apps and games to create new ways of engaging users, such as incorporating user-owned content and offering unique NFT rewards to build user loyalty.

Google collaborated with Reddit as one of its internal partners in developing the new policy.

“We partnered with Google to help update their policy, aimed at creating a level playing field that promotes user trust, and responsible usage of blockchain technology,” said Matt Williamson, senior engineering manager of Reddit.

A select group of developers is currently testing the new policy. It is scheduled for a broader rollout across all developers on Google Play later this year.

With these policies, Google brings itself closer in line with its main competitor, Apple Inc., which also introduced updated guidelines on crypto trading and the use of NFTs in apps and games on its App Store last October.

The crypto community on Twitter received Google’s announcement with enthusiasm. NFT investors consider the update as a positive sign that the market for digital assets is still active, despite the decline in prices and waning interest over the past few months.

Daniel Borovik, an NFT creator on OpenSea, said on Twitter, “Google is allowing NFTs in apps & games! You thought NFTs were dead?”

“We’re so back,” tweeted Kyle McCollom, a co-founder of Brooklyn-based crypto startup Daylight.

Google’s mixed strategy in recent years

In 2018, Google Play introduced a ban on crypto mining apps. It later removed the Bitcoin Blast video game due to its “deceptive practices” in 2020.

“Google’s suspension cited their ‘deceptive behavior’ policy … but did not state exactly what behavior Google thought was deceptive,” said Amy Wan, chief executive of game developer Bling, as quoted by Forbes.

The ban on Bitcoin Blast caused Wan to doubt the future collaboration between her company and Google. She also warned crypto businesses not to rely solely on Google’s platforms.

Google has also suspended the ConsenSys-backed crypto wallet and mobile browser app MetaMask from Play Store. However, it was later reinstated.

Nevertheless, in 2021, Google Cloud collaborated with Dapper Labs, a Canadian startup known for creating the NBA Top Shot marketplace. The partnership was intended to provide support for Dapper’s Flow blockchain.

Under a multi-year partnership, Google Cloud has been acting as a network operator, leveraging its infrastructure to facilitate the scalability of Flow.

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