Apple’s App Store rules are about to come under a lot more scrutiny and that could be bad news for the company. A group of iOS users claimed Apple had
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Apple’s App Store rules are about to come under a lot more scrutiny and that could be bad news for the company.
A group of iOS users claimed Apple had unfairly increased app prices with its locked-down App Store. Apple argued that the users had no right to sue since they were iOS store users and not its customers. However, the new ruling establishes that app buyers are Apple’s direct customers, giving them the right to proceed with their antitrust case. Apple v. Pepper claims that by requiring iOS users to buy apps through its official App Store and charging developers a 30 percent commission, Apple is adding a mandatory fee that developers logically pass on to customers.
This doesn’t have any immediate consequences for Apple because there’s still a long legal fight ahead. While it’s impossible to say exactly how this will play out, there are a few areas where Apple might be forced to change its rules.
One possibility is that Apple could be forced to allow users to install apps from outside of the App Store, what’s sometimes called “sideloading.” Unfortunately, this would mean the end of the so-called “walled garden.” which Apple says is for security reasons. But there’s another reason why it controls app distribution: money. Apple takes a 30 percent cut of app sales and in-app purchases which, it controls. If it were forced to allow other app stores or let developers sell apps directly to users, it could potentially lose out on a significant amount of revenue.
What we are certain of is, none of this is great for apple.