Thursday, Mar 24, 2022, 14:46 Economy

Apple Receives 45 Million € Anti-Trust Fine & Continues With Business As Usual

The fact that Apple's current payment model is on thin ice in numerous countries will come as old news to any who have followed the company's embroilment in anti-trust allegations and controversies over the last few years and, in particular, last year. The company's most recent major controversy is in the Netherlands, involving mostly dating app services such as Tinder – owned by the Match Group. The online-dating provider has declared its unwillingness to follow provisions and conditions set by Apple involving the App Store and commissions. Dutch anti-trust authority (Autoriteit Consument & Markt [ACM]) has taken the side of Match Group and is now requiring Cupertino to come up with an alternative payment method for such service providers. Currently, Apple takes a 15-30% commission on all App Store purchases. If a developer's current income from App Store sales or in-app purchases falls below US$1,000,000 per year, Cupertino only demands 15% instead of 30% and select sites or services that sell physical products (such as Amazon) are exempt from the commission ruling and allowed to choose or provide their own payment method. Thus far, Apple has yet to really comply with ACM's requests – making a legal confrontation almost unavoidable now.

45 Million € Fine – Apple's Current Propositions Deemed Insufficient
Apple's concessions to ACM's demands are still not sufficient for many of those on the other side of the deal. To be precise, Cupertino has barely deviated from its original business model at all. Alternative payment methods still aren't really supported nor allowed, and Apple continues to take a 27% commission on all sales. The Netherlands' anti-trust authorities have now fined Apple 5 million € due to its failure to comply with recent requests – and that's for the 9th time in a row now, making for a 45 million € total in fines in the Netherlands. The maximum amount is 50 million € – at least for now. The company is likely to face further punishment in the Netherlands, along with an appearance in court – should the matter fail to be resolved promptly. According to TechCrunch, competition authorities have now received a set of propositions from Apple now undergoing examination.

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Is An Appearance In Court Inevitable?
Those who have paid attention to the developing conflict are certainly unlikely to expect that Cupertino's recent propositions will be enough to satisfy the parties on the other end of the line. According to FOSS Patents, Apple likely isn't even concerned about avoiding an appearance in court at all. Cupertino could make a court appearance and buy itself a little bit more time as it has tried to unsuccessfully in the past . However, this strategy certainly wouldn't be devoid of risk. Authorities in the Dutch speaking country haven't exactly shown that much support for Apple's actions nor stances of late.

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