There has been yet another blow to the highly lucrative and profitable Apple Tax, and this time, it is from the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM). The Dutch regulator has ordered changes to the iPhone maker's App Store payment policies, particularly to those concerning the 30 percent commission from every sale.
Apple must allow dating app developers to offer non-Apple payment systems for in-app purchases or face a hefty fine. If this sounds familiar that’s because it is. Epic Games first initiated this legal battle and, interestingly, responded after Apple threw the company out for offering third-party payment solutions within Fortnite.
According to Reuters, the ACM has been investigating Apple’s App Store policies since 2019. However, the regulator has singled out “Dating Apps” after receiving a complaint from Match Group. This group owns insanely popular dating services like Tinder, Match.com, and OkCupid.
While discussing the verdict, Martijn Snoep, chairman of the board of ACM noted:
“Some app providers are dependent on Apple’s App Store, and Apple takes advantage of that dependency. Apple has special responsibilities because of its dominant position. That is why Apple needs to take seriously the interests of app providers too, and set reasonable conditions.”
The ACM has allowed Apple until January 15 to comply. As part of the compliance process, the iPhone maker must allow dating app developers to offer alternate payment systems. Additionally, they should also be allowed to point users to payment options outside the app. Failure to comply could invite a €5 million per week fine, up to a maximum of €50 million.
In a similar legal battle not too long ago, Apple had relented and allowed app developers to use “external” means of communication such as email, to inform about third-party payment options to app users. Developers couldn’t use their own apps to offer this information and facility. Moreover, developers had to seek permission from app users to convey the relevant information.
Via: The Verge