Epic Games and Spotify blast App Store changes

Both companies are two of Apple’s most vocal critics on the subject.

What you need to know

  • Spotify and Epic Games have blasted changes to Apple’s App Store which will reduce the 30% App Store cut for the ‘vast majority’ of developers.
  • Epic’s Tim Sweeney said the change was a “calculated move by Apple to divide app creators and preserve their monopoly on stores and payments.”

Epic Games and Spotify have blasted Apple’s plan to reduce its App Store commission rate for developers who earn less than $1 million a year in revenue.

As reported by The Verge:

Epic Games and Spotify, united in their fight against Apple, each released statements on Wednesday slamming the iPhone maker following news of its new App Store fee reduction for developers making less than $1 million per year.

Apple announced today it would reduce App Store rates for developers who earn less than $1 million a year in revenue, estimated to include around 98% of Apple’s paying developers.

From the report, Epic CEO Tim Sweeney reportedly stated:

This would be something to celebrate were it not a calculated move by Apple to divide app creators and preserve their monopoly on stores and payments, again breaking the promise of treating all developers equally… By giving special 15 percent terms to select robber barons like Amazon, and now also to small indies, Apple is hoping to remove enough critics that they can get away with their blockade on competition and 30 percent tax on most in-app purchases… But consumers will still pay inflated prices marked up by the Apple tax.

Equally critical, Spotify also gave a statement:

Apple’s anti-competitive behavior threatens all developers on iOS, and this latest move further demonstrates that their App Store policies are arbitrary and capricious. While we find their fees to be excessive and discriminatory, Apple’s tying of its own payment system to the App Store and the communications restrictions it uses to punish developers who choose not to use it, put apps like Spotify at a significant disadvantage to their own competing service. Ensuring that the market remains competitive is a critical task. We hope that regulators will ignore Apple’s ‘window dressing’ and act with urgency to protect consumer choice, ensure fair competition, and create a level playing field for all.

The report states that Sweeney further claimed that Android and iOS should be “fully open to competition in stores and payments”, accusing Apple of “gerrymandering the community with a patchwork of special deals.”

As noted in the report, Basecamp CTO David Heinemeier Hansson also took to Twitter to criticize Apple in a long thread. Hansson has previously been very outspoken against Apple’s App Store policies.

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