Music streaming platform Spotify has once again complained about the 30% commission charged by Apple's App Store app Store, arguing that the practice hurts competition and consumer choice. Spotify believes that companies should have the opportunity to win over consumers on a level playing field. Spotify noted in a new press release that Apple's restrictive policies conflict with this principle and unfairly favor its own financial interests.
Spotify noted that while there has been some progress in Europe, regulatory intervention globally remains inadequate. This has allowed Apple to maintain its monopoly control over the App Store, resulting in higher costs for consumers and hampering innovation for developers. Spotify said Apple's approach had a negative impact on the user experience and innovation. Spotify, for example, said they had to create a complex process for audiobooks due to Apple's restrictions, resulting in a poor user experience. In addition, Spotify also noted that they can't provide customers with pricing information about premium membership upgrades, offer payment options other than Apple's regulations, or roll out new features without Apple's express permission.
Spotify also raised concerns about sharing confidential business plans with Apple during the approval process, which could give their main competitor an unfair advantage. They also point to inconsistencies in Apple's policies, such as the fact that Apple's own apps such as Apple Music don't have to pay a 30% commission, which puts third-party developers and their customers at a disadvantage. In fact, Spotify doesn't have to pay Apple's 30% commission in most cases. After the first year of the subscription, Apple's fee drops to 15 percent.
The dispute between Apple and Spotify has been going on for years. In 2019, Spotify filed an anti-competitive complaint in the European Union. In July 2023, the company announced that it would cut off the remaining customers who paid for Spotify premium memberships through the Apple Store. Apple countered Spotify's accusations, saying the company wanted to "enjoy all the benefits of a free app without the costs."
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