Spotify Sides With Epic Games in Battle Against Apple's App Store Fees

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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Spotify, which has also faced off with Apple over Apple's App Store policies and fees, today weighed in on Epic Games' fight with Apple over Fortnite's removal from the App Store.


Unsurprisingly, Spotify has sided with Epic Games, applauding Epic's decision to "take a stand against Apple." From a statement provided to Recode's Peter Kafka:
We applaud Epic Games' decision to take a stand against Apple and shed further light on Apple's abuse of its dominant position. Apple's unfair practices have disadvantaged competitors and deprived consumers for far too long. The stakes for consumers and app developers large and small couldn't be higher and ensuring that the iOS platform operates competitively and fairly is an urgent task with far-reaching implications.
The fight between Apple and Epic Games heated up quickly over the course of the day. This morning, Epic added a feature to Fortnite that allowed players to purchase V-Bucks in the Fortnite app with a direct payment that skirted the App Store rules prohibiting developers from accepting payments outside of the in-app purchase system.

It turned out to be a planned change that sparked a rapid response from Apple. Hours after the direct payment option was added, Apple pulled the Fortnite app from the iOS App Store.

Right after that happened, Epic announced a pre-prepared lawsuit against Apple, accusing Apple of being a "behemoth seeking to control markets, block competition, and stifle innovation" and imposing "anti-competitive restraints" and using "monopolistic practices in markets" against ‌App Store‌ developers.

Epic Games also shared a "Nighteen Eighty-Fortnite" short as part of its swift and forceful PR campaign against Apple. The video, which is available on YouTube and in the Fortnite game, is based on Apple's iconic 1984 ad and calls on Fortnite players to "join the fight to stop 2020 from becoming 1984."


When the Fortnite app was removed from the App Store, Apple in a statement to MacRumors said that Epic has benefited from "the App Store ecosystem" and its tools, testing, and distribution, and that Apple's guidelines "create a level playing field for all developers and make the store safe for all users."

It's not yet clear if Epic's lawsuit against Apple, which calls for "injunctive relief" for developers from Apple's App Store policies and fees, will be successful, but it does put App Store rules back in the spotlight at a time when Apple is already facing a U.S. antitrust investigation into the App Store.

Apple and Spotify have also had public disputes in the past, with Spotify launching a complaint against Apple with the European Commission in 2019. Spotify has long been unhappy with the 15 to 30 percent cut that Apple takes from Spotify subscriptions, especially when Apple does not have to pay the same fees for Apple Music.

Apple has made concessions in its fight with Spotify, launching a feature that allows Siri to work with non-Apple Music services. With iOS 14, Apple is also allowing third-party music services like Spotify to work with the HomePod as an alternative to Apple Music.

Article Link: Spotify Sides With Epic Games in Battle Against Apple's App Store Fees
 

LawJolla

macrumors member
Sep 29, 2013
52
433
Take a second to read the complaint. Epic alleges the single option / Apple payment processing is at issue and monopolistic, not the store. I tend to agree given the law.

Look at it from the store out, not from the product down. For instance, say that a mall forced every store to use the mall's credit card processing service. That's ok because there are many malls and business/consumer choice. But now assume that the mall also makes its own product (phone?), and the only way to sell add ons for the product/phone is through its mall using its processing service.
 
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LeonPro

macrumors 6502
Jul 23, 2002
372
98
For one, it's Apple that created the store for their eco-system. They didn't force people to buy the Mac OS. They can't expect to build a store and not get a kick-back on the profit.

On the other hand, I don't know if 30% is justifiable in terms of kick back due to the benefits they received from Apple.

I don't know who is the more greedy one here.
 

itsmilo

macrumors 68040
Sep 15, 2016
3,610
7,835
Berlin, Germany
Take a second to read the complaint. Epic alleges the single option / Apple payment processing is at issue and monopolistic, not the store. I tend to agree given the law.
yep. I see nothing wrong with a pop up as they implemented to let the user / customer choose how they’d like to pay. It’s not like they wanted the Apple Payment option to be removed
 

Saipher

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2014
300
1,147
CA, USA
It all started with Apple not allowing a xCloud app in the App Store, which is absurd since it’s a streaming app just like Netflix. Apple wanted to “approve” each individual game and a slice of the pie (sales). I’m glad Epic through its weight in the fight, and now Spotify has joined. Expect more companies to join in...
 

CygnusTC

macrumors newbie
Sep 7, 2010
25
67
Agree with other comments. Don't like the platform someone else created for you? Don't sell on it! Pretty simple. Create your own then or follow their rules...

My Uncle didn't like the bag check, security, etc of flying commercial so he (cause is rich) hires his own private jet for trips. Problem (his) solved.
 

zorinlynx

macrumors 603
May 31, 2007
6,184
9,243
Florida, USA
yep. I see nothing wrong with a pop up as they implemented to let the user / customer choose how they’d like to pay. It’s not like they wanted the Apple Payment option to be removed
I'm perfectly okay with Apple having their payment system and even charging 30%. What I have an issue with, and agree with Epic and Spotify on, is that Apple bans even mentioning other ways to pay from inside apps. This is an anticompetitive practice (because Apple isn't losing 30% on their own services they sell) and needs to go.
 

ugahairydawgs

macrumors 68030
Jun 10, 2010
2,741
1,577
For one, it's Apple that created the store for their eco-system. They didn't force people to buy the Mac OS. They can't expect to build a store and not get a kick-back on the profit.

On the other hand, I don't know if 30% is justifiable in terms of kick back due to the benefits they received from Apple.

I don't know who is the more greedy one here.
If it was 15% they would all be bitching about that too. Same as if it were 7.5%.
 

Abazigal

macrumors G5
Jul 18, 2011
13,204
11,431
Singapore
It all started with Apple not allowing a xCloud app in the App Store, which is absurd since it’s a streaming app just like Netflix. I’m glad Epic through its weight in the fight, and now Spotify has joined. Expect more to join in...
The sharks have smelled the blood in the water.

But they will not find Apple such easy prey.
 

itsmilo

macrumors 68040
Sep 15, 2016
3,610
7,835
Berlin, Germany
I'm perfectly okay with Apple having their payment system and even charging 30%. What I have an issue with, and agree with Epic and Spotify on, is that Apple bans even mentioning other ways to pay from inside apps. This is an anticompetitive practice (because Apple isn't losing 30% on their own services they sell) and needs to go.
that’s what I tried to say 😉
 

JoelTheSuperior

macrumors 6502
Feb 10, 2014
394
397
London, UK
If Spotify and Epic don’t want to pay the price of admission, then they can do without the Apple app store. They won’t do that, though. They want to come to Apple’s home and demand what Apple does and doesn’t do in their own home.
Problem is they can't because there's no other way to make your app available on iOS.

To be clear, I think it's fine for Apple to decide what can and can't go on the App Store. But equally they shouldn't restrict users from installing apps from outside the app store.
 

aaronhead14

macrumors 65816
Mar 9, 2009
1,070
4,964
I gotta agree with Epic Games and Spotify on this one. Apple’s demands are quite extreme. They need to loosen their policies and stop demanding such a large chunk of the profits. Apple can still make lots of money without being so extreme.

Also, consumers have the right to install software on their own devices, from wherever they please. Can you imagine if Apple started forcing Mac users to only install apps from the Mac App Store? That would be disastrous. Yet that’s exactly what they’ve been getting away with on iOS all this time. It’s a dang shame.
 

jole

macrumors member
Feb 6, 2004
35
51
USA
I see nothing wrong with a pop up as they implemented to let the user / customer choose how they’d like to pay. It’s not like they wanted the Apple Payment option to be removed
2 problems:

1) EPIC would drop Apple payment to bypass parental controls, avoid accountability from Apple's dispute rules and track your identity. This would be a worse experience for consumer.

2) When consumer is not happy what happened (their kid spent $100 in V-bucks), they might not understand who is at fault and complain Apple about that instead of EPIC.
 
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