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Epic Games CEO says Apple's Dutch App Store compliance 'a sham'

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What you need to know

  • epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney says that Apple's plans to comply with new Dutch App Store payment laws are "a sham".
  • It came in response to Apple's revelation it will still charge developers 27% commission on alternative payments and payments processed externally after someone clicks an in-app link.
  • He said he could not understand what Apple's end game was and how they would avert "a massive loss of credibility".

The CEO of Epic Games Tim Sweeney has labeled Apple's plans to comply with Dutch payment competition laws as "a sham."

The Fortnite maker's outspoken chief took to Twitter Friday after it emerged that Apple plans to charge developers who use external payment methods 27% commission rather than its usual 30%. He stated:

Here's a great summary of Apple's bad-faith compliance with the Dutch payment competition ruling.Apple knows their actions are a sham. The world knows their actions are a sham. Apple knows the world knows their actions are a sham. Yet Apple continues the sham.

Sweeney went on to say he didn't know why Apple was doing this, and said "it's hard to understand what Apple's intended end game is here, and how they intend to avert a massive loss of credibility and goodwill."

The "summary" Sweeney was referring to is a series of tweets from Marco Arment outlining Apple's plans to offer developers a choice between in-app purchases or alternative payments.

As Arment noted the rules are quite stringent, as developers that offer the alternative payment option must do so through a separate app only available in the Netherlands that can't also support IAP's, developers must also warn users that their payments are being handled by Apple, and will be required to invoice Apple each month with a full record of digital sales so Apple can charge the right amount of commission.

On Friday one high-profile developer described Apple's plans as "absolutely vile" and said the move "says everything about Tim Cook's Apple and what it thinks of developers." Another developer even stated that they would be pulling their apps from the App Store for 48 hours during Apple's rumored upcoming event on March 8, where the company may launch a new iPhone SE with 5G and a new iPad Air.

Stephen Warwick
Stephen Warwick

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple.

1 Comment
  • "pulling their apps from the App Store for 48 hours". Heck just go with your integrity. Pull them altogether, now. Or is it that you actually make money by being on the App Store, taking advantage of Apple's provided services, hosting, bandwidth, vetting, consumer confidence, platform, clientele. Maybe you have taken a look at hosting your apps yourself, and managing or contracting your own payment system. You can do that on Android you know. Just go there.