India's initiative to replace Playstore and App Store

            India has launched its own app store in order to reduce our reliance on global tech giants such as Apple and Google. Mobile Seva is its name, and it now has simple applications for postal monitoring and a variety of other government-related sectors for users and employees. Also, IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has urged young people to create their own apps in this medium so that they are not reliant on Google's Playstore or Apple's AppStore, as creating and releasing an app on these platforms can be a costly and time-consuming operation.

Mobile Seva

        Google pulled Paytm's mobile app from its Play Store on September 18, citing the Indian company's violation of its gambling policy.

The irritant, according to Google, was a scratch card-based cricket promotion on the app. The promotion was withdrawn, and the app was back on the Play Store in a matter of hours, much to the relief of the app's 39 million active users who were concerned about their money's protection, but it did spark a debate: is Google too powerful for the Indian app ecosystem?

        After all, almost all banks and fintech firms have mobile apps, and India is largely an Android market, making it extremely reliant on Google.

Vijay Shekhar Sharma, the founder and CEO of Paytm, accused Google of acting as judge, jury, and executioner. He mentioned that all options against Google were available, emphasising an Indian alternative to the Play Store. According to sources, the government is considering a proposal from Indian tech entrepreneurs to create an Indian app store to compete with Google and Apple.

         This is being created as an alternative to fight the domination of tech giants like Google and Apple, according to IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad in the Rajya Sabha. Developers from all over the world have been given the opportunity to showcase their work on a platform, and the Mobile Seva Appstore has received over 965 applications.

Launching Mobile Seva
                                                      (Image Source: NDTV)

        These applications are available for download on the websites of the state and federal governments, as well as the Mobile Seva AppStore. The Mobile Seva AppStore has a large number of applications organised by states and categories, all of which are free to download.

To have a superior experience, Google and Apple use cutting-edge technology. A government-backed app store versus Google's Play Store will be a non-issue for the average user.

        Similarly, these app stores have stringent measures in place to avoid malware or other significant vulnerabilities from spreading. These programmes aren't the most exciting for consumers, but they are crucial in preserving an individual's cyber security. Apple's privacy policies are widely regarded as the best in the industry, and Google employs specialist teams as well as a network of white-hat contributors to ensure the apps are secure for all users.

        Finally, these app stores provide a lot more to developers. Apple and Google communicate with developers and have a variety of resources for the whole ecosystem. Despite its controversy, the in-app payment service has helped a lot of small developers monetize their apps.

Mobile Seva - Home Screen

        Although the idea of an Indian app store is intriguing, there is little room or demand for it. To get to where they are now, Google and Apple have spent years defining security protocols, delivery policies, and other service agreements. None of it can be easily repeated without compromising the user experience. This isn't the first time we've advocated for more localization in the tech industry. It was expected that Indian alternatives would rush to fill the void left by TikTok's ban, but they failed to impress, and Facebook-backed Instagram's Reels has easily filled the void.

        In the short term, a made-in-India app store will gain a lot of momentum, but after the initial euphoria wears off, it will find few takers. If the government and businesses are worried about Google and Apple's power, the first line of defence should be new rules or policies.



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