Google Play is creating an opportunity for blockchain developers and NFT projects to create immersive digital experiences and achieve widespread adoption.
Google Play, the popular app store, announced on Wednesday that it would allow developers to integrate tokenized digital assets, including non-fungible tokens (NFTs), into their apps and games.
This move is part of the app giant’s efforts to facilitate customer-driven innovation and creativity while enhancing transparency, safety, and reliability.
Under the new policy, projects integrating NFTs must clearly indicate the presence of a blockchain element in their apps through the Play Console. In addition, the projects aren’t allowed to “promote or glamorize any potential earning from playing or trading activities.”
These requirements ensure users are aware of the involvement of blockchain technology within the applications they download.
In a recent blog post, Joseph Mills, Product Manager of Google Play, expressed excitement about this policy update. He mentioned how integrating NFTs will empower partners to reimagine “traditional games with user-owned content.” He believes “unique NFT rewards” will improve user experience, and thus boost their loyalty.
Mythical Games, a blockchain gaming studio, and Reddit, a renowned community platform, have joined forces with Google Play to implement this new policy. Matt Williamson, Reddit’s senior technical manager, emphasized that these updated guidelines will foster a level playing field and promote responsible use of blockchain technology, inspiring user trust.
A spokesperson from Google Play confirmed that the new policy will be fully implemented by the end of the year. This step aims to engage development teams and diversify the app store by enabling apps and games that involve the buying, selling, or rewarding of digital assets like NFTs.
Previously, the giant kept a less friendly stance toward tokenized digital assets and blockchain-based apps. However, recent developments demonstrate Google’s game-changing approach toward Web3 applications.
Last year, ArDrive Mobile, a decentralized data storage app, granted Google Play’s approval to be available on its app store. The Android service additionally allowed the popular game Axie Infinity: Origins to be listed on Google Play.
In April 2023, Google Cloud, the established cloud computing service provider, introduced an initiative to support Web3 builders and startups in accelerating their development efforts.
Google Play is not the only behemoth to grow interest in digital assets. Another major cloud computing player, Amazon, has been rumored to be developing an NFT trading platform. However, no recent updates have surfaced on this speculation.
With tech giants ramping up for digital assets’ integration, there is a likelihood of Apple’s app store lagging behind. The Apple-powered marketplace has taken a more cautious approach to apps with blockchain elements, requiring a longer approval process before officially supporting them.
Of course, all this is happening at a time when love for NFTs is at a low point.
NFT Interest in Decline
Google Play’s latest update comes amid the ongoing decline in NFT sales. The value of multiple NFT collections has taken a nosedive over the last few months. The downtrend is forecast to continue this year.
NFT trading volume reportedly plummeted below $1 billion in May and June, a significant drop compared to its peak in April 2022. Coupled with the setback, many celebrities experienced major financial losses as there has been no profit from their NFT investments.
A notable example is Justin Bieber. The famous singer spent $1,3 million on a BAYC NFT. The digital piece has decreased by 95% and is valued at about $59,000. Another case is Madonna – the legend suffered the same fate when her $466,000 NFT purchased in March last year now costs just over $53,000.
According to CoinDesk, the floor price for an NFT from the Bored Ape collection has dropped to a record low since October 2021.
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