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CCI is of the view that Apple’s proprietary payment system restricts app developer’s choices

New Delhi, NFAPost: Competition Commission of India has ordered investigation into Apple’s business practices in India.

The anti-trust body is of the initial view that Apple has violated India’s anti-trust law. CCI is of the view that Apple’s proprietary payment system restricts app developer’s choices.

“The Informant has alleged that Apple uses a barrage of anti-competitive restraints and abuse of dominant practices in markets for distribution of applications (‘apps’) to users of smart mobile phones and tablets, and processing of consumers’ payments for digital content used within iOS mobile apps (‘in-app content’).

The Informant has averred that Apple imposes unreasonable and unlawful restraints on app developers from reaching users of its mobile devices (e.g., iPhone and iPad) unless they go through the ‘App Store’ which is stated to be controlled by Apple. Further, Apple also requires app developers who wish to sell digital in-app content to their consumers to use a single payment processing option offered by Apple, which carries a 30% commission.

“In contrast, app developers can make their products available to users of an Apple personal computer (e.g., Mac or MacBook) in an open market, through a variety of stores or even through direct downloads from a developer’s website, with a variety of payment options and competitive processing fees that average 2-5% (ten times lower than the exorbitant 30% fees which Apple charges for in-app purchases on mobile devices). As per the Informant, this amounts to abuse of its dominant position on the part of Apple in violation of Section 4 of the Act,” stated the CCI order.

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