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EU says Apple's App Store breached new digital rules


 , Updated 20:50, 24-Jun-2024
EU says Apple's App Store breached new digital rules

Apple could face billions of euros in fines after the European Union antitrust and technology regulator on Monday released findings that the iPhone maker's App Store violated the bloc's landmark digital competition rules.

The European Commission informed Apple in preliminary findings that the "App Store rules are in breach of the Digital Markets Act (DMA), as they prevent app developers from freely steering consumers to alternative channels for offers and content."

The charge against Apple is the first under the commission's landmark Digital Markets Act, which aims to curb the power of Big Tech and ensure fair competition for smaller rivals. The final decision is expected by March next year. 

"As they stand, we think that these new terms do not allow app developers to communicate freely with their end users and to conclude contracts with them," EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said at a recent conference.

The commission noted that under most business terms, Apple permits "link-outs," where app developers can include a link in their app that redirects customers to a web page to conclude a contract. 

Additionally, the commission criticized the fees Apple charges developers for acquiring new customers via the App Store, stating they exceed what is necessary for such remuneration. 

Apple responded by saying it has made several changes in recent months to comply with the DMA after receiving feedback from developers and the commission.

(With input from agencies) 

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