TECH

Spotify and Epic Complain Again That Apple Won't Comply with DMA

Flags of the European Union

Spotify, Epic, Proton and dozens of others have signed a letter to the European Commission demanding the agency investigate Apple's failure to comply with the digital markets.

On March 1, 34 companies and associations wrote an open letter to the European Commission. The letter raises concerns about Apple's alleged non-compliance with the Digital Markets Act (DMA), which is due to come into force on March 7.

Signatories disagree with how Apple requires developers to stay within the law. current App Store ecosystem or accept new terms. They suggest that this is a “false choice” and adds unnecessary complexity to what should be a simple choice.

They also believe the new fee structure is designed to maintain and “strengthen Apple's exploitation of its dominance over app developers.” They argue that transaction fees and core technology fees are designed to discourage developers from choosing App Store alternatives.

Signatories also believe that Apple's plans to use controls and disclosure — what they call “fear screens” — “will be misleading and degrade the user experience.” They argue that this will deprive users of actual choice and ability to take advantage of any benefits offered under the DMA.

“The European Commission's response to Apple's proposal will serve as a litmus test for the DMA and whether it can benefit Europe's citizens and economy,” the letter said.

The letter calls on the European Commission to take swift, timely and decisive action against Apple — preferably as soon as possible on March 7th.

“This is the only way to ensure that DMA remains reliable and provides competitive digital markets,” the group says.

Signatories include

  • Spotify
  • Epic Games
  • Proton
  • Blockchain.com
  • Deezer
  • Threema
  • European Publishers Council
  • European Game Developers Federation
  • European Fintech Association
  • >
  • News Media Europe
  • France Digitale

On Friday, Apple published a white paper detailing how it says it is working to protect users from EU, and highlights the risks of opening the iPhone to competition with app stores. And hours later, they announced that Progressive Web Apps would work as expected in the EU after a month of deliberately crippling them in beta versions of iOS 17.4.

The company also cited a number of emails in which users stated that they did not want to see sideloading and a third-party app store on their iPhone.

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