Apple Defends App Store Changes in the Netherlands as Fines Reach €30 Million

Amid an ongoing dispute with the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) in the Netherlands over the App Store, Apple has defended its plan to require app developers to submit an additional app binary for the Dutch storefront if they wish to use a third-party payment processing method.

iOS App Store General Feature Dock 2
The ACM has ruled that Apple must allow dating apps in the Netherlands to use third-party payment processing systems. This differs from developers elsewhere in the world who must use Apple's in-app purchasing system built into the ‌App Store‌. Apple has announced plans to comply with the ruling, giving developers the ability to use a third-party method in the app itself or redirect users to a website for purchase.

Apple's plan to comply with the ruling, however, has faced some criticism over its requirement that developers submit an additional app binary for their dating app in the Netherlands if they wish to use a third-party payment method. The requirement has caused the ACM to deem Apple's plan as not complying with its ruling and consequently has levied weekly fines for the Cupertino tech giant. The penalties have now accumulated to €30 million.

In a letter obtained by MacRumors, Apple's head of compliance, Kyle Andeer, has defended Apple's plan and said it believes it is fully compliant with the ACM ruling and that Apple has a "consistent and longstanding commitment to compliance in each and every country in which we do business." In the letter, Andeer explained that the ‌App Store‌ operates under one set of core rules applied to all developers and all apps, irrespective of country.

"To ensure the best experience for users, Apple does not operate multiple versions of the ‌App Store‌, there is just one store with many different storefronts. That has proven to be an incredible opportunity for developers," Apple said. In some cases, Apple noted that some developers might want to offer a different app binary for specific storefronts, possibly to comply with local law and regulation.

Apple's requirement that dating apps submit a different app binary if they wish to use a third-party payment method or redirect users to the web for in-app purchases is "a straightforward prerequisite," according to Apple. The additional app binary ensures "that Apple complies with its legal obligations in the Netherlands while at the same time having the ability to maintain its standard terms and conditions in the rest of the world," Apple added.

Apple emphasized in the letter that the practice of employing an additional app binary is not complicated or costly for developers to do. "Dating apps are familiar with this process and in fact engage in it voluntarily," Apple noted. To prove its point that the practice is not an out of the ordinary requirement for it to enforce, Apple highlighted several apps made by Match Group, a developer which led the ACM to investigate Apple's ‌App Store‌, that have different app binaries for different storefronts, including "Our Time" and "Match."

Dating app developers in the Netherlands would only need to conduct "minor technical" changes to their existing app binary if they wish to use third-party payment methods or websites.

Dating app developers need to update their binary in order to take advantage of the new alternatives ordered by the ACM as the existing binaries of apps in the App Store do not contain third party processor or linking out capabilities. Apple's requirement therefore does not add any additional coding obligation on the developers but simply requires them to maintain the old binary for use outside of the Dutch storefront. With the changes Apple has implemented to comply with the ACM order, developers of dating apps in the Netherlands may update their binary now.

The ACM has been blunt in its denial of Apple's plans, saying that Apple has "refused to put forward any serious proposals" for its concerns over the company's compliance plan.

Andeer admitted in the letter that Apple and the ACM "have a difference of opinion" that may eventually need to be resolved by a court. Nonetheless, Andeer said that Apple is committed to working with the ACM in finding a solution both parties can agree to that benefits both Dutch developers and consumers.

Top Rated Comments

sw1tcher Avatar
10 months ago

I have not idea what you are talking about? Can't read your mind? What is the thing Apple promised to fight?
A future dominated and controlled by one big evil corporation.

Steve Jobs said this once:

"It is now 1984. It appears IBM wants it all. Apple is perceived to be the only hope to offer IBM a run for its money. Dealers initially welcoming IBM with open arms now fear an IBM dominated and controlled future. They are increasingly turning back to Apple as the only force that can ensure their future freedom. IBM wants it all and is aiming its guns on its last obstacle to industry control: Apple. Will Big Blue dominate the entire computer industry? The entire information age? Was George Orwell right about 1984?"
Replace IBM with Apple and those with open eyes will see that it's not too far off from the truth.

"It is now 2020. It appears Apple wants it all. ________ is perceived to be the only hope to offer Apple a run for its money. Consumers initially welcoming Apple with open arms now fear an Apple dominated and controlled future. They are increasingly turning back to ________ as the only force that can ensure their future freedom. Apple wants it all and is aiming its guns on its last obstacle to industry control: ________. Will Apple dominate the entire app industry? Was George Orwell right about 1984?"
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SoldOnApple Avatar
10 months ago
Why do dating services even need apps, they could run their services through websites and keep 100% of the profit from any fees they charge. 100% is more than 70%.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
I7guy Avatar
10 months ago

A future dominated and controlled by one big evil corporation.

Steve Jobs said this once:

Replace IBM with Apple and those with open eyes will see that it's not too far off from the truth.
In 1984 there was little competition to ibm. In 2022 there is plenty of competition to Apple. Apple in 2022 according to global market share is a minority.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
4jasontv Avatar
10 months ago
Anyone that has ever given an irrationally angry customer what they asked for can feel for Apple right now.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jz0309 Avatar
10 months ago
... benefits both Dutch developers and consumers.

honest question: how many Dutch dating apps/developers are there? and I mean developed in the Netherlands
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tranceme Avatar
10 months ago

Apple is slowing becoming the very thing it promised to fight.

First it said all this protection is for consumer privacy and now that its pretty clear its for profits, apple is behaving like a Rogue tyrant that is poking elected democratic governments.

Why do they all go this way? First Google, then Lone Musk and now even Tim Apple.
I have not idea what you are talking about? Can't read your mind? What is the thing Apple promised to fight?
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

iOS App Store General Feature JoeBlue

Apple's Fines in Dutch Antitrust Case Could Exceed €50 Million

Friday March 25, 2022 10:57 am PDT by
Apple is facing yet another €5 million ($5.5 million) fine in the Netherlands for failing to sufficiently meet recently mandated alternative payment system requirements for dating apps, reports Reuters. Apple has been fined €45 million ($49.5 million) by the Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) to date, with Apple racking up a new fine each week. The ACM initially said that it...
iOS App Store General Feature JoeBlue

Apple to Allow In-App Third-Party Payment Options for First Time in the Netherlands

Saturday January 15, 2022 12:39 am PST by
Apple has announced that it will allow third-party payment options for in-app purchases for dating apps in the Netherlands, in the first ever concession of its kind. In a message posted on its developer site late on Friday, Apple announced that it will comply with a Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) ruling that compels the company to allow third-party payment services to...
iOS App Store General Feature Dock 2

Apple Would Rather Pay Up to €50 Million in Fines Than Address 'Gatekeeper' App Store Behavior, Says EU Chief

Wednesday February 23, 2022 6:14 am PST by
Apple would rather pay a maximum of €50 million in fines than address concerns brought forward by the Dutch competition authority regarding developer access to third-party payment methods on the App Store, the EU's head of digital policy, Margrethe Vestager, has said. During a speech about the digital economy and privacy (via TechCrunch), Vestager said that Apple "essentially prefers paying...
app store blue banner epic 1

Judge Says Apple Has Until December 9 to Make App Store Change Letting Developers Link to Alternate Payment Methods

Tuesday November 9, 2021 5:37 pm PST by
Following a virtual hearing earlier today, Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers has denied Apple's request to delay the implementation of a permanent injunction that will require Apple to make significant App Store changes. As part of the judgement in the Apple v. Epic lawsuit, Judge Gonzalez Rogers is requiring Apple to allow developers to add in-app links to outside websites, paving the way for...
iOS App Store General Feature JoeBlue

Dutch Regulators to Meet With Dating App Providers to Assess Apple's Plan for Alternate In-App Payment Options

Monday January 17, 2022 9:55 am PST by
The Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) in the Netherlands plans to assess Apple's announced plans for allowing dating apps on the App Store in the country to use third-party payment methods, ensuring those plans "meet the requirements" of a previous ruling. Over the weekend, Apple announced that it would exclusively allow dating apps on the App Store in the Netherlands to use...
app store blue banner

Apple Pays $100 Million to Settle Developer Lawsuit and Agrees to Multiple App Store Changes

Thursday August 26, 2021 5:08 pm PDT by
Apple today announced plans to make several changes to the App Store in order to settle a class-action lawsuit that was brought against Apple by developers in the United States. Under the terms of the deal, Apple will let developers use communication methods like email to tell customers about payment methods available outside of iOS apps, and it will expand the price points that developers...
iOS App Store General Feature Dock

Dutch Regulator Says Apple's Plan for Third-Party In-App Payments is Insufficient, Fines Apple 5 Million Euros

Monday January 24, 2022 6:33 am PST by
The Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has ruled that Apple's plan to allow App Store dating apps to use third-party payment methods for in-app purchases does not sufficiently meet the requirements of a previous ruling. As a result, the ACM has hit Apple with an initial 5 million euro fine as a consequence, and fines will continue to be assessed at 5 million euros per week up to a...
General App Store South Korea Feature Feature

Apple's Proposal to Allow Third-Party Payment Methods in App Store 'Lacks Detail,' Says South Korean Regulatory Commission

Thursday February 3, 2022 2:36 am PST by
Apple's plans to allow developers to use third-party alternative payments methods within their apps in South Korea "lacks concrete detail," according to South Korea's Communications Commission (KCC). In August, South Korea passed a law that bans app store operators from requiring developers to use their in-app purchase systems. Last month, Apple submitted its compliance plans to the KCC that ...

Popular Stories

iOS 16

Apple Releases iOS 16.1.2 With Carrier Improvements and Crash Detection Optimizations

Wednesday November 30, 2022 10:09 am PST by
Apple today released iOS 16.1.2, another minor bug fix update that comes one week after the release of iOS 16.1.1 and three weeks after the launch of iOS 16.1, an update that added support for iCloud Shared Photo Library, Matter, Live Activities, and more. The iOS 16.1.2 update can be downloaded on eligible iPhones over-the-air by going to Settings > General > Software Update. According...
Emergency SOS via Satellite iPhone YT

Apple's iPhone 14 Emergency SOS via Satellite Feature Saves Stranded Man in Alaska

Thursday December 1, 2022 4:37 pm PST by
With the launch of iOS 16.1, Apple rolled out a Emergency SOS via Satellite, which is designed to allow iPhone 14 owners to contact emergency services using satellite connectivity when no cellular or WiFi connection is available. The feature was put to the test in Alaska today, when a man became stranded in a rural area. In the early hours of the morning on December 1, Alaska State Troopers ...
General iOS 16 Feature Yellow

iOS 16.2 for iPhone Launching This Month With These 8 New Features

Thursday December 1, 2022 8:44 am PST by
Apple plans to publicly release iOS 16.2 for the iPhone in mid-December, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The update remains in beta testing for now, with at least eight new features and changes already uncovered so far. iOS 16.2 introduces a number of new features, including Apple's new whiteboard app Freeform, two new Lock Screen widgets for Sleep and Medications, the ability to hide...

Man Robbed After Buying 300 iPhones From Apple Fifth Avenue

Tuesday November 29, 2022 11:54 am PST by
An unnamed 27-year-old man who purchased 300 iPhones from Apple Fifth Avenue on Monday morning was robbed shortly after leaving the store, according to 1010Wins Radio in New York. He was carrying 300 iPhone 13s in three bags and walking to his car at 1:45 a.m. when another car pulled up next to him. Two men jumped out and demanded that he hand over the bags. Not wanting to hand over 300...
14 vs 16 inch mbp m2 pro and max feature 1

'M2 Max' Geekbench Scores Leak Online, Revealing Rumored Specs and Performance

Wednesday November 30, 2022 2:39 am PST by
Geekbench scores allegedly for the upcoming "M2 Max" chip have surfaced online, offering a closer look at the performance levels and specific details of the forthcoming Apple silicon processor. The Geekbench results, first spotted on Twitter, are for a Mac configuration of with the M2 Max chip, a 12-core CPU, and 96GB of memory. The Mac listed has an identifier "Mac14,6," which could be...
iPad 10 Battery Pull Tabs

iPad 10 Teardown Reveals Why Device Isn't Compatible With Apple Pencil 2

Thursday December 1, 2022 10:48 am PST by
Do-it-yourself repair website iFixit today shared a video teardown of Apple's new 10th-generation iPad, providing a closer look inside the tablet and revealing why the device lacks support for the second-generation Apple Pencil. The teardown reveals the internal layout of the iPad, including its two-cell 7,606 mAh battery, logic board with the A14 Bionic chip, and more. As suspected, the...
Apple Park View

Elon Musk Meets With Apple CEO Tim Cook Amid Claims of Twitter App Store Dispute [Updated]

Wednesday November 30, 2022 12:43 pm PST by
Twitter CEO Elon Musk today met with Apple CEO Tim Cook at the Apple Park campus in Cupertino, California, according to a tweet shared by Musk this afternoon. Musk thanked Cook for taking him around Apple's headquarters, with no mention of what the two might have discussed. The meeting comes just after Musk on Monday claimed that Apple has "mostly stopped" offering ads on Twitter, and that...
eufy camera

Anker's Eufy Cameras Caught Uploading Content to the Cloud Without User Consent [Updated]

Tuesday November 29, 2022 1:01 pm PST by
Anker's popular Eufy-branded security cameras appear to be sending some data to the cloud, even when cloud storage is disabled and local only storage settings are turned on. The information comes from security consultant Paul Moore, who last week published a video outlining the issue. According to Moore, he purchased a Eufy Doorbell Dual, which was meant to be a device that stored video...
app store awards 2021

Apple Announces 2022 App Store Award Winners, Highlighting Best Apps of the Year

Tuesday November 29, 2022 3:10 am PST by
Apple today announced its 2022 App Store Award winners, highlighting the 16 best apps and games selected by Apple's global App Store editorial team. The top apps were chosen by Apple for their quality, innovative technology, creative design, positive cultural impact, and ability to deliver "exceptional experiences." Apple CEO Tim Cook said: This year's App Store Award winners reimagined...
iOS 16

Apple Still Has These 5 Things to Release Heading Into 2023

Thursday December 1, 2022 7:12 am PST by
The calendar has turned to December and that means Apple has only one month left to fulfill its promises of releasing an Apple Music Classical app and expanding its self-service repair program to Europe before the end of 2022. Delays are always possible, of course, so the plans could be pushed back to 2023. In any case, we have put together a list of five things that Apple still has to release...