EU Accuses Apple of Anticompetitive Behavior, Threatening Fines


The European Commission has notified Apple of its preliminary findings, asserting that the current App Store rules breach the Digital Markets Act (DMA). Fines of up to 10% of global annual turnover can result from confirmed violations. European Commission Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton characterized Apple’s actions as “squeezing out innovative companies,” denying consumers new opportunities and choices.

The European Commission criticizes Apple’s restrictions on third-party developers, preventing them from informing customers about alternative purchasing options free of charge. Additionally, the Commission believes that the linking mechanism allowing developers to redirect customers to their websites, while Apple accepts payment and pays a commission, is limited.

Apple has announced various changes to comply with the DMA based on developer feedback and Commission input, emphasizing that more than 99% of developers will pay the same or less in fees compared to the current model. The Commission will open a third non-compliance investigation into Apple’s new contractual terms for EU developers.

The inquiry will focus on Apple’s Controversial Core Technology Fee and its application to alternative app marketplaces, leading to a €0.50 per-app fee after one million downloads. Developers now have the option to opt in to the standard business terms or newly proposed terms that allow app distribution beyond the App Store, but this choice contributes to a reduced revenue share after a million downloads.

A full investigation into the Core Technology Fee compliance with the DMA is underway.

Romain Dillet
Romain Dillet
Senior Reporter. Romain has written over 3,000 articles on technology and tech startups and has established himself as an influential voice on the European tech scene. He has a deep background in startups, privacy, security, fintech, blockchain, mobile, social and media. When he’s not writing, Romain is also a developer — he understands how the tech behind the tech works.

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