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Apple reportedly fails to comply with Dutch anti-competition agency ruling

According to reports, Apple still has not satisfied the Dutch antitrust agency ACM. The global giant is being compelled to allow a category of apps in the country to use their non-Apple fee payment solutions.

Reuters report that the ACM has rejected another proposal by Apple to satisfy the order to let dating apps use third-party payment systems in their apps. The iPhone maker has racked up 45 million euros or $49 million in fines. The ACM had been fining Apple 5 million euros each week it stays flouting the ruling.

The ruling has reached its ninth week, and it does appear there is a resolution in sight.

Apple reportedly submitted another action plan, but an official with the ACM, speaking in an unofficial capacity to Reuters, said the proposal did not fully comply with the order.

When the total fines reach $50 million, the ACM rules call for the weekly penalty to increase in amount.

Apple has faced lots of criticism for its App Store practice of taking up to 30 percent of every transaction carried out through iOS and iPad apps. This includes subscriptions and in-app or in-game purchases.

The ACM launched an investigation into Apple’s payment methods in 2019 to see if it abused its dominant market position. However, the scope of the investigation was narrowed to only dating apps, including Tinder, Grindr, etc. This was because Tinder’s parent company, Match Group Inc., wrote a petition against the payment processing mechanism in the app store.

The ACM concluded Apple was misusing its position and ruled it to make changes, although the company has continued to deny the claim.

Meanwhile, Apple has more than just the Netherlands to worry about, as the EU is about to introduce a new set of rules to prevent the big tech companies from squeezing the life out of the smaller or new ones. As a ‘gatekeeper,’ the new rules could compel Apple to make its iMessage interoperable with smaller messaging platforms. It will also have to open up its App Store later in the year when the rules come into effect.

Apple opposes these rules, claiming they affect the security iOS devices are known for.

Even outside Europe, Apple has been told to allow developers to use third-party payment systems in their apps in South Korea. This follows a new law on how app stores should run passed by the legislative in the Asia country.

Even at home, Apple is appealing a court ruling that it must allow apps to contain a link to third-party payment methods if the developer so chooses. This was the outcome of a lawsuit brought by Epic Games, which Apple kicked out of its App Store for daring to use its payment system in its popular game Fortnite. The judgment is currently stayed, but given all the outcomes in different parts of the world, there is no telling which way the appeal court ruling would go.

Apple’s strict implementation of its 30 percent cut often brings it in conflict with competing services. For example, Apple could afford to make its music streaming business cheaper than Spotify, which has to account for the Apple tax.

Meanwhile, Google has faced similar lawsuits, even though it doesn’t typically take up to 30 percent. It is currently working with Spotify to test alternative billing systems in its Play Store.

Written by HackerVibes

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