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8 Feb, 2020 10:15

China’s mobile giants teaming up to challenge Google Play dominance

China’s mobile giants teaming up to challenge Google Play dominance

Chinese companies Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo are working on an app store alliance that would allow developers outside of China to upload the app once and have it show up across all four firm's app stores simultaneously.

That’s according to an exclusive report by Reuters which cited analysts as saying that the move is meant to challenge the dominance of Google’s Play store. The move will also help the four companies expand more into software and services as hardware sales decline.

The Global Developer Service Alliance or GDSA, for short, reportedly aims to make it easier for developers of games, music, movies and other apps to market their apps in overseas markets.

The platform was initially intended to be launched in March, the sources said. It could cover nine “regions” including India, Indonesia and Russia.

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According to Sensor Tower analyst Katie Williams, Google has earned almost $9 billion globally from the Play store last year. The company, whose services are banned in China, also sells content such as movies, books and apps on the Play store and collects a 30 percent commission.

“By forming this alliance each company will be looking to leverage the others’ advantages in different regions, with Xiaomi’s strong user base in India, Vivo and Oppo in Southeast Asia, and Huawei in Europe,” said Nicole Peng, the VP of Mobility at technology market analyst firm Canalys.

“Secondly, it’s to start to build some more negotiation power against Google,” she added. 

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The four companies made up over 40 percent of global handset shipments in the fourth quarter of 2019, according to data from the consultancy IDC.

Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi have full access to Google services in international markets. Huawei lost access for new devices last year after Washington banned US suppliers from selling goods and services to the telecoms giant, citing national security risks.

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