Following a temporary suspension on paid extensions this year due to fraudulent transactions, Google will pull the plug on paid extensions entirely over the next several months. Developers haven’t been able to submit new paid extensions since March, but this week’s announcement confirms that paid extensions won’t be coming back at all. Further, the free trial option offered by the Chrome Web Store will go away on December 1.
On February 21, 2021, all paid Chrome extensions will lose access to payments through the Web Store. Sometime later in the year, too, Google will pull the plug on its licensing API that enables developers to verify that a user has actually paid for the extension.
For developers who still want to monetize their extensions, Google says they’ll need to migrate to both another payment processor and a new licensing API.
The Chrome Web Store payments system is now deprecated and will be shut down over the coming months. There are many other ways to monetize your extensions, and if you currently use Chrome Web Store payments, you’ll need to migrate to one of them.
Odds are that most people haven’t even purchased a Chrome extension before, so this change may not matter all that much. Going forward, though, any Chrome extension that requires a paid element will need to be using billing details and methods aside from what Google has long offered.