We’ve been asked this question multiple times. If both Apple and Google take a 30% cut of in-app purchases, why is Apple and the App Store considered a monopoly while Google and the Play Store are not? It comes down to this: Apple does not allow iOS users to install apps from third-party stores. Thus, the infamous walled garden forces iPhone users to install apps from the App Store even if it means paying more for an app. Google allows Android users to sideload apps from third party app stores such as the Amazon appstore or Samsung’s Galaxy App Store thus giving Android users the opportunity to install an app from another store rather than the Google Play Store.
Pointing out its differences with the App Store, Google notes that even with Epic Games’ Fortnite kicked out of the Play Store for supporting alternative payment methods, the game can be downloaded on an Android device via a third-party store. Google states that, “even if a developer and Google do not agree on business terms the developer can still distribute on the Android platform.”
Certainly Android 12 will bring plenty of new features which we will probably hear about next May during Google I/O 2021. But for now, Google promises to make the use of third-party app stores easier with Android 12.