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Apple Loosens App Rules As Class Action Looms

Apple has made a concession of sorts, as it fights to avoid what may be a lengthy and costly court battle regarding its app store payments.

“Developers can use communications, such as email, to share information about payment methods outside of their iOS app,” Apple said in a statement late Thursday.

“As always, developers will not pay Apple a commission on any purchases taking place outside of their app or the App Store.”

Apple also said it will keep its promise to lower the 30 per cent commission on app revenues to 15 per cent for those developers who bring in less than $1 million a year.

In addition, Apple has announced a $100 million ‘Developer Assistance Fund’ that will pay between $250 and $30,000 to those developers who earned less than $1 million a year between June 2015 and April 2021 – which it claims is roughly 99 per cent of developers.

“Today’s move only adds to the momentum and further exposes rampant anticompetitive abuses in the app markets,” Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal said of these concessions.

“The fox guarding the hen house status quo will remain until there are clear and enforceable rules for Apple and Google to play by.”

Spotify also weighed into the battle, saying it ignored the company’s “anticompetitive and unfair” practices.

“They are attempting to distract policymakers and regulators and slow down the momentum that’s building around the world to address their behaviour,” said Spotify’s chief legal officer, Horacio Gutierrez.

“Apple has been allowed to abuse their dominant position for years, and we continue to seek real reforms to ensure that companies can innovate and compete fairly, on a level playing field.”

 

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