A sizeable number of top app developers have come together to fight against Apple’s method of control over its App Store and, to some extent, have expressed grievance against Google’s Play Store. In recent months, this topic has been under regulatory scrutiny.
Thirteen app publishers, including Deezer, Epic games, Tile, Spotify, Basecamp, and others, have started the Coalition for App Fairness.
The new organization brings formality to many companies’ efforts to force app store providers to change policy or accept regulation, with the main focus on Apple.
Apple is a bully, according to the coalition
Epic Games is currently involved in a lawsuit against the App Store’s commission guidelines. Basecamp’s launch of its Hey email app escalated into a public battle with Apple when the iPhone maker blocked updates, simply because Basecamp did not use Apple’s in-app purchase platform.
The complaints keep coming, with some developers speaking out to the U.S. Congress. The new group also has app makers like the European Publishers Council, News Media Europe, SkyDemon, Tile, Prepear, Blix, Blockchain.com, and others.
There is already a website up where the key issues are detailed. They list anti-competitive practices, citing the App Store’s 30% commission structure.
An affront to personal freedom
Other policies make it hard or impossible to distribute apps to the billions of Apple devices through any other means other than the App Store. The group considers this an attack on personal freedom.
Google allows apps to be side-loaded and is not receiving most of the criticism. Google is, however, also going to enforce the Play Store policy. The coalition focuses its energy on Apple’s business, given how the iPhone maker tends to play by different and harsher rules.
Apple may have nailed down the app control game, but they do not have the freedoms needed by creators. How this plays out, only time will tell.