Google getting rid of paid extensions for Chrome

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Google has announced that it will shut down all paid extensions for Chrome over the coming months.

In an announcement on their Chrome developer site, Google stated that developers will need to make use of alternate Web Store payments if they wish to monetise their extensions.

According to the company,  this change is due to a fast-developing ecosystem which now allows developers access to more payment options.

As part of the shutdown, developers will no longer be able to make new paid extensions as of 21 September.

This is a continuation of the temporary bans from earlier this year. As of 21 September, Google has made the ban permanent.

The ban results from the Chrome Web Store team uncovering a spike in illegal transactions involving paid Chrome extensions aiming to exploit users.

google chrome extensions timeline

Meanwhile, Google will also begin to phase out payment for existing items. By 1 December, users will no longer be able to start free trials.

By 1 February 2021, the company will disable all payments.

While the Licensing API can still be used by developers, Google plans to also shut this down in future.

How to export users licences for paid Chrome extensions

Google notes that developers will be able to export user licences.

To export user licenses, Google suggests following these guidelines:

  1. For the migration to be successful, your new payment option/licensing plan should be ready to be implemented
  2. Have a licensing migration app ready on your site that can access the Chrome Web Store API
  3. Create a new extension which leads users to your site for the migration to begin

Feature image: Chrome_Deepanker Verma via Pexels

Ashleigh Klein


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