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Apple Updates App Store Payment Rules to Allow Developers Contact Customers Directly

It’s a concession for App Store developers who can now contact customers about alternative payment methods and bypass Apple’s 15-30 percent commission.

Apple Updates App Store Payment Rules to Allow Developers Contact Customers Directly

Apple proposed the changes to its App Store in August in legal settlement with small developers

Highlights
  • Apple has bypassed its App Store fee as a result of the update
  • Epic launched a case aiming to break Apple's grip on the App Store
  • Apple was ordered to loosen control of its App Store payment options

Apple has updated its App Store rules to allow developers to contact users directly about payments, a concession in a legal settlement with companies challenging its tightly controlled marketplace.

According to the App Store rules updated Friday, developers can now contact consumers directly about alternative payment methods, bypassing Apple's commission of 15 or 30 percent.

They will be able to ask users for basic information, such as names and e-mail addresses, "as long as this request remains optional", said the iPhone maker.

Apple proposed the changes in August in a legal settlement with small app developers.

But the concession is unlikely to satisfy firms like Fortnite developer Epic Games, with which the tech giant has been grappling in a drawn-out dispute over its payments policy.

Epic launched a case aiming to break Apple's grip on the App Store, accusing the iPhone maker of operating a monopoly in its shop for digital goods or services.

In September, a judge ordered Apple to loosen control of its App Store payment options, but said Epic had failed to prove that antitrust violations had taken place.

For Epic and others, the ability to redirect users to an out-of-app payment method is not enough: it wants players to be able to pay directly without leaving the game.

Both sides have appealed.

Apple is also facing investigations from US and European authorities that accuse it of abusing its dominant position.


What's most interesting about Apple's new MacBook Pros, M1 Pro and M1 Max silicon, AirPods (3rd Generation), and Apple Music Voice plan? We discuss this on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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