Developers tool up in app store policy challenge - Mobile World Live

Developers tool up in app store policy challenge

24 SEP 2020

Some of the biggest critics of Apple’s App Store policies formed a non-profit lobby group to press for changes across all marketplaces, seeking to deliver a level playing field for developers.

The Coalition for App Fairness includes Spotify and Fortnite-maker Epic Games, both of which have been ardent critics of Apple’s marketplace in recent months. The group stated it aims to promote fairness, innovation and consumer choice in app stores.

Other participants include Match Group, parent of dating app Tinder; email app developer Basecamp; European Publishers Council members; News Media Europe; and Protonmail.

The coalition pledged to advocate for reforms to help “app and game developers that rely on app stores and the most popular gatekeeper platforms”.

While the group called for the operators of all app stores to act fairly, it singled Apple out, explaining app developers had spent “years” raising “concerns about the onerous and arbitrary” terms of the “App Store in particular, as well as last-minute iOS updates which equally disadvantage developers”.

Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney explained the company joined the coalition “to defend the fundamental rights of creators to build apps and to do business directly with their customers”.

The game developer stepped up against Apple, after Fortnite was removed from the App Store due to a spat over a direct payment option.

In June, the European Commission initiated a probe of Apple’s policies, which it said was partly prompted by a complaint filed by Spotify in 2019.

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Yanitsa Boyadzhieva

Yanitsa joins Mobile World Live as a Reporter based in London. She has more than 5 years’ experience at various media outlets in her home country Bulgaria. She started her career as a political reporter, followed by taking editor roles...

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