Earlier this year, market regulators in the Netherlands fined Apple a whopping 5 million euros because its compliance plan for allowing dating apps in the country to use third-party payment systems was unsatisfactory. Apple has clarified that it intends to charge a hefty 27 percent commission on the transactions processed by third parties.
Apple revealed plans to allow dating app developers in the Netherlands to use third-party systems. The tech giant unveiled a “reduced” commission structure where developers would need to cough up a 27 percent commission after taxes. Apple hopes the number seems like a bargain, compared to its 30 percent commission for using the App Store’s billing system. The iPhone maker claims it arrived at the 27 percent number based on the amount users pay after accounting for value-added tax.
The dating apps in the Netherlands can offer alternative payment systems natively in their apps or by linking to the payment system’s website. Apps would need to tell the customer they are redirected to non-Apple payment services. The developers would also need to give Apple a monthly sales report. The company would then invoice the developers for the 27 percent commission, to be paid in 45 days.
Apple’s initial compliance plan attracted a 5 million euro fine for every week that Apple does not comply. The maximum penalty that can be levied is 50 million euros. The details it has revealed seem to be a boilerplate response to avoid further fines. Details like the External Purchase Modal Sheet that would inform customers of the third-party payment system being used appear half-baked. The API developers would need to integrate is also unavailable in the current iOS builds. Moreover, Apple’s documents state that it reserves the right to change the policy as its technology evolves.
Do you think Apple would stick to its word and offer developers alternatives at competitive commission rates, or is this proposal just a response to avoid further penalties? Tell us in the comments section.[Via Apple]