Spotify, Epic Games, and Others Ask European Commission to Investigate App Store’s New Policy’s Legality

Spotify, Epic Games, Deezer, Paddle, along with various other companies and European Union associations, have submitted a letter to the European Commission stating the digital content store policy changes from Apple do not align with the Digital Markets Act (DMA) of the European Union. With 34 companies and associations signing the collective complaint, they all firmly believe that Apple’s plans are not compliant with the law.

The letter alleges that Apple is disregarding the essence and context of the law, and if Apple’s proposals remain unchanged, it will make a mockery of the DMA. The complaint’s authors isolated specific parts of Apple`s proposed changes including the requirement of paying for the usage of basic company technologies, the process of notarization, and the terms that third-party developers must accept.

Apple’s requirement to abide by current App Store conditions or to agree to new ones presents developers with an “unacceptable choice”, creating further complications and confusion, according to the letter’s authors. They note that none of Apple’s offered options align with DMA requirements and only strengthen Apple’s digital market influence.

The letter goes on to express that the fees for using basic technologies and transaction charges will stifle competition, hence the developers can’t agree to the “unfair terms”. The authors of the letter believe that Apple is using “unfounded fears regarding privacy and security” to limit user options. They also state that Apple doesn’t allow downloads from third-party sources and makes installing and using third-party app stores intricate, risky, and financially unattractive for developers.

The signatories of the complaint are urging the European Commission to take “swift, timely, and decisive measures against Apple”. It is currently unknown what the reaction of the European Union’s primary industry regulator will be to this complaint. Notably, Apple needs to comply with the Digital Markets Act as of March 7, with the corresponding ecosystem changes to be integrated into iOS 17.4, expected to be rolled out early next week.

Related Posts