The European Union recently passed a new tech regulation called the Digital Markets Act (DMA), targeting digital “gatekeepers”–like Apple–and requiring them to allow third-party app stores, among other things. In complying with the new regulations, Apple has introduced even more fees, and the developers who publish apps on iOS aren’t happy about it.
Xbox’s Sarah Bond is the latest to comment on the fee structure, quoting a tweet from Spotify head Daniel Ek where he claims the new fees are simply a way of forcing developers to stick with the status quo, as picked up by The Verge.
“We believe constructive conversations drive change and progress towards open platforms and greater competition. Apple’s new policy is a step in the wrong direction,” Bond says in her tweet. “We hope they listen to feedback on their proposed plan and work towards a more inclusive future for all.”
We believe constructive conversations drive change and progress towards open platforms and greater competition. Apple’s new policy is a step in the wrong direction. We hope they listen to feedback on their proposed plan and work towards a more inclusive future for all. https://t.co/mDRI5KPJf6
— BondSarahBond (@BondSarah_Bond) January 29, 2024
The change in policy for the EU also drew comment from Epic CEO Tim Sweeney, who has been feuding with Apple over its App Store policies for years. Sweeney referred to the new fees as “a devious new instance of malicious compliance.”
The main issue getting developers riled up is a flat fee of 50 euro cents that will apply to every install of an app after 1 million installs, which will come into play if developers wish to distribute their apps through a third-party storefront. Any company running its own store will also have to pay the 50 cent fee per install, without the million-user threshold. The European Commission has said it will issue a response to Apple’s policy changes only after the DMA goes into effect in March, with heavy consequences if Apple falls short of the new regulatory requirements.
Epic has announced that it plans to finally release Fortnite again on iOS in Europe through the Epic Games Store thanks to the regulatory changes. Xbox is also reportedly planning on releasing its own mobile game store sometime in the future, bolstered by its recent acquisition of mobile gaming giant King as part of the Activision-Blizzard deal.