Google lifts paid app ban in Taiwan

Staff writer, with CNA

Thu, Feb 28, 2013 - Page 13

US technology giant Google Inc yesterday confirmed that it has resumed offering paid mobile applications in Taiwan, ending a 20-month self-imposed suspension resulting from a legal dispute with the Taipei City Government.

“Google Inc is pleased to announce that Taiwanese users can once again purchase paid apps on Google Play,” the company said in a statement.

Taiwanese users can now access the “Top Paid” app page at the Google Play app store — previously known as the Android Market — where about 12 apps are already available, with prices ranging from NT$49.80 to NT$740.74.

On June 3, 2011, the Taipei City Government ordered the local branches of Apple Inc and Google to include a seven-day free trial mechanism to their software stores within 15 days.

While Apple agreed to comply with the return policy, Google insisted on maintaining its original policy, which only allows users to seek a refund for paid apps within 15 minutes of purchase.

On June 27 of that year, the city government fined Google NT$1 million (US$33,700) for violating the Consumer Protection Act, (消費者保護法) which stipulates that consumers are entitled to return products they have bought online within seven days and to obtain a refund if they are dissatisfied or if the goods are faulty.

Google then suspended sales of paid apps from the Android Market in Taiwan.