Apple to Let EU Users Choose Alternative App Stores and Payments on iPads

2024 iPad Pro and iPad Air may finally Debut in the Second Week of May

According to the reports, Apple announced that it will be making changes to the iPad app ecosystem in the European Union this fall. These changes are a result of the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), which came into effect in March 2024 and designated Apple’s iPadOS as a “gatekeeper platform” recently. 

EU iPad users will have more options for downloading apps. Currently, apps can only be installed through the official App Store. Under the new rules, developers will be allowed to distribute their apps through alternative app marketplaces or directly from their own websites.

App developers in the EU will also benefit from these changes. They will be able to bypass Apple’s in-app payment system and use third-party payment processors within their apps. This can lead to lower transaction fees for developers, as Apple currently charges a commission of up to 30% on in-app purchases.

But the other side isn’t as green as visible. A new fee, called the Core Technology Fee (CTF), will apply to apps that have more than one million first-year installs in the EU. This fee is somewhat similar to the App Store fee and exists because Apple thinks that the apps are getting continued access to its core technologies on the device. Suffering from success?

There are exceptions for small developers, with Apple yet to disclose the specific revenue or install thresholds for this exemption.

This is not the first time Apple has faced scrutiny from regulators over its App Store practices. In 2021, a lawsuit by Epic Games alleged that Apple’s control over app distribution and in-app payments constituted an anti-competitive monopoly. 

More here.

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