The Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACA) found on Wednesday that the app store rules by Apple are anti-competitive due to regulations requiring software developers to use Apple’s in-app payments, according to a report by Reuters.
The US company’s policy requires app developers to use their in-app functions, which can have commissions up to 30%. The investigation launched in 2019 by the ACA aimed to look at how these practices could unfairly lead to dominance in the app market, providing a foundation for the claims of anti-competitive behavior. The “preferential treatment” Apple gave to its apps has brought significant criticism. Last month, Apple was instructed by the California District Court to make it easier for consumers to purchase Epic Games apps through other mediums by promoting alternate payment methods beyond Apple Pay.
Further complaints come from Match Group, who have criticized Apple’s methods in “hindering [the app] from direct communications with its customers about payments.” The ACA has said that the anti-competitive actions in limiting consumers from using alternate payment methods in the app store must be changed to reduce more risk of abuse of a dominant market position. The demand for changes has not yet resulted in fines. However, multiple claims are being filed by other countries, placing further pressure on the tech giant.