North Dakota Senate Shoots Down App Store Bill Apple Said Would 'Destroy the iPhone'
The North Dakota Senate today voted no on a new bill that would have paved the way for third-party app store options by preventing Apple from requiring developers to use its App Store and in-app purchase methods for apps.
According to the North Dakota government website, the SB2333 bill failed 11 to 36, which is good news for Apple.
Breaking: The North Dakota senate just voted down the bill that would've banned Apple and Google from taking a cut of app sales from firms in the state. Arizona and Georgia are considering similar bills, which are attracting intense lobbying on all sides.https://t.co/jKRBnH7NeI — Jack Nicas (@jacknicas) February 16, 2021
Apple Chief Privacy Engineer Erik Neuenschwander last week spoke out against the bill, saying that it "threatens to destroy the iPhone as you know it" by requiring changes that would "undermine the privacy, security, safety, and performance" of the iPhone.
North Dakota Senator Kyle Davison, who introduced the bill, said that it was designed to "level the playing field" for app developers in North Dakota and shield customers from "devastating, monopolistic fees imposed by big tech companies" like Apple and Google.
The bill would have prevented Apple from requiring a developer to use a digital application distribution platform as the exclusive mode of distributing a digital product, and it would have kept the company from requiring developers to use in-app purchases as the exclusive mode of accepting payment from a user.
Apple's representative literally said it would "destroy iPhone as you know it". Lol. I know the Mac has been declared dead many times, but come on, to have Apple be the one chanting that nonsense is beyond over the top. — DHH (@dhh) February 9, 2021
Lobbyist Lacee Byork Anderson, who was funded by the Coalition for App Fairness drafted the initial legislation. The Coalition for App Fairness is a collaborative organization created by companies like Epic Games, Spotify, Basecamp and Tile to highlight developer issues with Apple.
It was backed by Basecamp co-founder David Heinemeier Hansson, who was embroiled in a legal fight with Apple over email app "HEY" last year. Heinemeier Hansson praised the bill and said that it gave him hope that "tech monopolies aren't going to rule the world forever."