Apple no longer has a monopoly on the App Store completely.
A judge recently ruled that Apple cannot stop developers from directing users to payment options outside of the App Store.
However, the judge did state that, from a legality standpoint, Apple never did have a monopoly on the market. All this and more below:
While the judge stopped a bit short of calling it a monopoly, this remains a huge blow to Apple.
Apple stock went down 3% hours after the news broke.
Does this topic sound familiar? That’s because I wrote a blog about it a few short months ago: LINK TO BLOG HERE
Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers of the US District Court in the Northern District of California ruled on Friday that Apple (AAPL) had violated California's Unfair Competition Law by forcing Fortnite and its maker Epic Games to use Apple's payment systems on the App Store, with the iPhone maker extracting a 30% commission on every in-app purchase in the process. She issued an injunction saying Apple can no longer prohibit developers from adding links within their apps to outside payment options; for example, alerting users to the option to pay for a subscription on a web browser, rather than through the app.
Once again, the ruling did not favor the opinion that Apple was a monopoly, stating in court documents that, “Success is not illegal”.
"Today the Court has affirmed what we've known all along: the App Store is not in violation of antitrust law," Apple said in a statement.
What do you think about all this?
Me thinks, regardless of the fact that Apple wasn’t guilty of monopolizing their market, it still comes as a sizable blow to the tech giant.
From a PR perspective, yes. But I also think that when viewed from an unbiased lens, many think Apple shouldn't be tied to the monopolizing realm. After all, if you have to pay through the app store, developers are in some ways torn. Without doing what Apple says, your app has no real chance of succeeding.
Again from CNN:
"Today's ruling isn't a win for developers or for consumers. Epic is fighting for fair competition among in-app payment methods and app stores for a billion consumers," Sweeney tweeted, continuing: "Fortnite will return to the iOS App Store when and where Epic can offer in-app payment in fair competition with Apple in-app payment, passing along the savings to consumers."
It doesn’t come as a shock the case should soon be under appeal.
This means that perhaps the saga hasn’t just yet concluded. Stay tuned..
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