The Autoriteit Consument & Markt (CMA), the equivalent of the Competition Authority in the Netherlands, said it was satisfied with the changes made by Apple in the App Store. A series of changes were presented by the American company on June 10 concerning the possibility for developers to offer an alternative means of payment within their application.
Four options for developers
Specifically, dating apps – the only beneficiaries of these changes – can choose between four options. They can continue to use Apple’s proprietary payment system. In this case, they are taxed 30% (15% in some cases) on all purchases made in their application, even recurring ones.
But they can also now offer a third-party solution, include a link redirecting users to the developer’s website to make a purchase, or use a third-party payment system in the app, and include a link. In these three cases, the commission drops by 3% to reach 27% instead of 30%. In other words, a tiny reduction while the heart of the battle is located precisely on this point.
Apple is still waving the security argument
Indeed, application developers believe that Apple has an aggressive policy towards them by imposing taxation deemed unfair and very strict conditions of use. For its part, Apple justifies this position with security arguments, some of which are very easily refutable. “We do not believe that some of these changes are in the interest of user privacy or data security.“, writes the firm at the apple about the new conditions of use of its store.
The ACM welcomed the change made by Apple. “We are delighted that Apple has finally adapted the conditions to European and Dutch competition rules. This gives app providers more opportunities to compete. Consumers will also reap the benefits“said Martijn Snoep, Chairman of the Board of ACM.
A call in progress
Refusing to comply, Apple paid fines totaling 50 million euros, the maximum amount that could be imposed on it. But the new mode of operation of the App Store absolutely does not mean that Apple is giving up. “As previously stated, we disagree with the original ACM order and are appealing it.“, he declares.
Apple also faces similar charges across Europe. The Commission investigates the App Store and Apple Pay wishing to verify that antitrust regulations are respected.