Regulators in countless countries including the US, EU, and Australia have called the App Store a monopoly. A class action lawsuit currently weaving its way through the US court system accuses Apple of using this so-called monopoly power to value apps higher than they could normally cost. And at the end there is the so-called Apple tax, the 30% that Apple takes from many in-app payments. Google does so too, but one big difference prevents the Play Store from being labeled anti-competitive like the App Store.

According to Apple, the App Store is not a monopoly thanks to web browsers

The difference is that Apple device users like iPhone and iPad are not allowed to install apps from third-party app store fronts. This means that iOS and iPadOS users who want to install a particular app on their device have to do it in the App Store and pay the price. Google, on the other hand, allows users to download apps from the site, which means that Android users can install software from third-party Android app storefronts such as the Amazon Appstore and theoretically buy it at a lower price.

But as ZD Net notesApple has responded to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), rejecting its claims that the App Store is the most dominant app market. In a letter Apple wrote“Apple considers and treats other distributors of apps for platforms other than iOS as significant competitors whose pricing and policies limit Apple’s ability to exercise power over developers.” In other words, Apple says iOS users have other alternatives when looking for an app, such as using a website. The tech giant adds: “Apple is unable to ignore the environment in which its app marketplace operates and accepts what the Commission does not call the” most dominant app marketplace “by far . “
In his answer Apple states that any measure to make the App Store less attractive to users would be “economically irrational”. As Apple says, “In fact, Apple is competing fiercely to attract the best developers, since a decrease in the quality of apps or the availability of popular apps in the App Store would affect the user experience. Any action that undermines the App Store’s popularity. ” – including preventing developers from doing well in the app store – would be economically irrational as it would destroy the value of the ecosystem to the detriment of consumers, app developers and Apple itself. “The company therefore claims that even within the iOS ecosystem, users can gain access to third-party apps through developer websites and other outlets that allow those apps to be used on the iOS platform. Apple says this is important “because it is important for competition to offer developers flexibility in competition with other operating platforms”.

When discussing how a browser can compete with the App Store, Apple said, “Web browsers are used not only as a sales portal but also as platforms themselves, hosting” progressive web applications “(PWAs) that eliminate the need to download a Developer app through the App Store (or otherwise). PWAs are increasingly available for and through mobile browsers and devices, including iOS. PWAs are apps that have been created using popular web technology such as HTML 5, but have the look and feel and functionality of a native app. You can even have an app icon on the device’s home screen. Web apps are becoming increasingly popular. Companies like Amazon, Google, Starbucks, Pinterest, Uber, and the FT use web apps. Amazon, for example, just has launched its mobile Guna game service as a web app.2 Microsoft and Google are also launching gaming apps for iOS via web apps.3 The developer of the Telegram messaging app recently announced declares that work will be carried out on it. I web app for iOS devices. “

While Android users are allowed to download apps from the site, the Google Play Store is still being checked by the ACCC for the amount and type of data that the platform collects from users.

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