On March 13, 2019, Spotify filed an antitrust complaint against Apple before the European Union – due to a 2013 lawsuit. The music-streaming company claimed that the App Store’s policy, which requires developers to use the store’s secure payment system, is anti-competitive and hurts competing companies, including Spotify.
This complaint triggered an investigation by the European Commission determine if Apple broke the law of EU competition. An investigation that has just turned in favor of the Cupertino company, since the European Commission has announced an important change of direction.
The Commission will no longer question the obligation for apps to use the in-app purchase system
The commission recently announced that it would be scaling back its investigation into Apple’s rules on streaming music apps. In a revised statement of objections to Apple, The commission said it would no longer question the obligation for applications to use the in-app purchase system of the App Store for digital goods and services.
Instead the The investigation focuses on a rule that prevents apps from informing users that they get lower subscription prices if they subscribe directly on the company’s website and not through the App Store. Something that stems from the fact that some companies decide to charge users who sign up through the app more to compensate for the 15% (or 30 in some cases) commission.
The App Store Rules allow developers to inform users about alternative purchase methods (and other prices) by communicating outside of the app, e.g. B. by email. They also enable “reading” from apps such as Spotify adds a link to your website to manage your account and subscribe to the service directly, avoiding commissions. The only thing they don’t allow is that they advertise lower prices directly in the app.
While Spotify hasn’t allowed anyone to subscribe through the app for years, the commission’s preliminary view is that Apple’s rule preventing apps from reporting alternative prices in themselves could violate European law. The Commission added that this rule could be “harmful to users of streaming music services on Apple mobile devices” because they may end up paying more and “negatively affect the interests of streaming music application developers by restricting the choices of the user.” effectively restrict consumers”.
Apple welcomes the Commission’s decision
In a statement (via MacRumors), a spokesperson for Apple said the company was ‘satisfied’ that the commission reduced the case:
“Apple will continue to work with the European Commission to understand and respond to their concerns while promoting competition and choice for European consumers. We are pleased that the Commission has reduced the case and is no longer questioning Apple’s right to charge a fee for digital goods and require the use of in-app payment systems that users trust.“.
“The App Store has helped Spotify become the leading music streaming service across Europeand we hope that the European Commission will close an investigation based on an unfounded complaint.”
At present, We’ll have to wait and see how events develop, but no doubt Spotify’s complaint has been practically reduced to ashes. The ability to communicate offers via email and the ability to insert a link so that users subscribe to the app for free and without commissions when they open it undoubtedly has its weight. We’ll see how the investigation goes.
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Source : www.applesfera.com