The Dutch competition authority (ACM) has decided to fine Apple €5 million for alternative payments with apps on the App Store. The authority judges that the recent announcement of the iPhone manufacturer does not meet expectations.
A fine for Apple in the Netherlands
Last week, Apple announced that it would allow alternative payments for dating apps available on the App Store in the Netherlands. The group did not do this to please the developers, but to comply with a request from the local competition authority. The developers of dating applications can thus use other means of payment and not necessarily that of Apple which imposes a commission of 15% or 30%.
Today the authority declared have analyzed Apple’s announcement and it does not meet expectations. “For now, dating app developers can just express interest. In addition, Apple has raised several barriers to the use of third-party payment systems by dating app developers”, adds the ACM. Indeed, developers must submit a different version of their applications for the Dutch App Store, in addition to having the green light from Apple. Additionally, Apple appears to be requiring developers to choose between offering purchase through an alternative payment system from within the app or being able to direct users to payment options from a website. The ACM believes that Apple should allow developers to offer both options.
In any case, Apple has already assured that it will continue to take a commission on purchases made with alternative means of payment. But the manufacturer does not say how it will do this or what the commission will be charged.
In view of the situation, the competition authority in the Netherlands therefore imposes a fine of 5 million euros on Apple. And it does not stop there in reality since fines of 5 million euros will be imposed each week as long as Apple has not made any changes. The maximum amount will be 50 million euros (10 weeks therefore).