Apple France fined €1 million for App Store abusive commercial clauses
Apple on Monday was fined €1 million in France by the Paris Commercial Court. The court accused the company of imposing abusive commercial clauses on developers who distribute their apps on the App Store.
As reported by Reuters, the ruling only requires Apple to pay the €1 million fine, which is about $1.06 million, due to how the company manages the App Store. This time, Apple wasn’t required to make any changes to the App Store since the European Union’s Digital Markets Act is already expected to force Apple to change the App Store guidelines anyway.
Apple told the report that it will appeal the decision and that the App Store “helped French developers of all sizes share their passion and creativity with users around the world.” The company also claims that the App Store is a “secure and trusted” place for customers.
Although the fine is of irrelevant value to Apple, it increases the pressure against the company to force it to further open up the iOS ecosystem, which has come under antitrust scrutiny around the world.
Apple’s App Store under pressure in Europe
In February, Apple was fined for the fifth time in the Netherlands for not complying with a new local regulation that requires the company to let some apps available in the App Store offer alternative payment methods. The value of the fines already exceeds $5 million.
Earlier this year, the Digital Markets Act was passed by the European Union parliament. The antitrust legislation will require Apple to allow developers to use third-party payment platforms in their apps, as well as enable app sideloading in iOS and iMessage interoperability with other messaging platforms.
An agreement has finally been reached on the scope of planned European antitrust legislation. It was previously unclear whether or not Apple would be included in the companies targeted, but it has now been confirmed that the definition will be broad enough to include the iPhone maker.
According to recent rumors, Apple has already been secretly working to allow alternative app stores on iOS, as well as opening up its private APIs to third-party developers. However, at the same time, the report claims that Apple has no plans to make iMessage compatible with other platforms, or even to adopt the RCS standard.
Some of these changes are expected to be announced as early as next year with iOS 17.