South Korea passes law forcing Google and Apple to open their app stores to alternate...

Daniel Sims

Posts: 176   +10
Staff
What just happened? South Korea just became the first country in the world to pass a law preventing app store owners like Google and Apple from forcing developers to use their payment systems. The two tech giants in particular are facing increasing scrutiny over how much control they should have over their platforms, but this represents a significant new step, as Epic Games' CEO has already pointed out.

What has been dubbed the "Anti-Google Law" in South Korea was originally passed in that country's parliament last week, but the final vote went through yesterday. The bill will become law when signed by South Korea's president, whose party has already backed it.

According to a report from the Associated Press, the companies also can't punish apps that use alternate payment systems by imposing unreasonable delays in approving those apps. South Korean authorities can even investigate app store operators in order to ensure fair competition.

In February, North Dakota proposed a law similar to the one South Korea just passed, and the US Senate floated one in early August that would completely break down walled gardens on app platforms.

Apple and Google each make billions from the App Store and Google Play Store, respectively, by getting a cut from app purchases and in-app purchases. Normally they take 30 percent, but both have enacted separate plans to reduce that cut to 15 percent for many developers.

Epic Games head Tim Sweeney has already hailed the law as a historic moment and a move towards open platforms. "Korea is first in open platforms," he wrote on Twitter. "Korea has rejected digital commerce monopolies and recognized open platforms as a right."

Sweeney even went as far as to liken the event to the fall of the Berlin Wall. "As President Kennedy said at the Berlin Wall in 1963, today all developers around the world can be proud to say: I am a Korean!"

"Google Play provides far more than payment processing," Google said in a statement outlining everything that goes into developing and maintaining an operating system and app store. "And just as it costs developers money to build an app, it costs us money to build and maintain an operating system and app store. We’ll reflect on how to comply with this law while maintaining a model that supports a high-quality operating system and app store, and we will share more in the coming weeks.”

Apple recently settled a class action lawsuit by changing its app store rules to allow developers to notify users of payment options other than Apple's, so long as they notify users through methods outside the apps, such as email. Apple also agreed to pay $100 million to small developers.

Image credit: Jin Sung-chul/Yonhap via AP

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seeprime

Posts: 634   +809
Or, the greedy lazy giants could cut their take in half to 15% max. It doesn't cost them as much to run their app stores as they imply it does. It costs "money", yeah. Not that much though.
 

NeoMorpheus

Posts: 883   +1,679
Nice!

But I think they should force Apple to also allow sideloading or alternate stores.

Google already has sideloading.
 

yRaz

Posts: 3,911   +4,196
OSX and Windows don't even charge developers to install their software on desktops, why should phones be any different? Many people don't even have traditional computers anymore, all they have is a phone or a tablet. I'd argue that mobile devices are PCs and we should have a right to install whatever operating system we please and use whatever software we please. I don't care if the formfactor isn't as convient as a desktop or laptop, they are personal computers.

Linux doesn't have any problem maintaining operating systems for free and if you look at Microsoft, less than 10% of their sales come from the sale of windows. Their #1 money maker is office followed by cloud services. Apple doesn't even sell their operating system.

Google and Apple should go the route of Microsoft. Make a platform to sell their services on.

Google collects our data while using their services, sells it to advertisers and then takes a chunk of money from them when we buy something. It's a fairly disgusting practice if you think about it. They're triple dipping
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 417   +545
OSX and Windows don't even charge developers to install their software on desktops, why should phones be any different? Many people don't even have traditional computers anymore, all they have is a phone or a tablet. I'd argue that mobile devices are PCs and we should have a right to install whatever operating system we please and use whatever software we please. I don't care if the formfactor isn't as convient as a desktop or laptop, they are personal computers.

Linux doesn't have any problem maintaining operating systems for free and if you look at Microsoft, less than 10% of their sales come from the sale of windows. Their #1 money maker is office followed by cloud services. Apple doesn't even sell their operating system.

Google and Apple should go the route of Microsoft. Make a platform to sell their services on.

Google collects our data while using their services, sells it to advertisers and then takes a chunk of money from them when we buy something. It's a fairly disgusting practice if you think about it. They're triple dipping

Kinda hard to call O365 just office, when its biggest selling point is the cloud services. That is their #1 Money maker. Standalone copies of Office are not big source of income.

But I will agree out of the big tech companies Microsoft by far makes their money in the most legit way. Apple has long wanted to emulate Microsoft's ability to have diversified income.

Apple doesn't really have a grip on the phone market like MS does on the desktop. Their primary user base is mostly females. Their user base could easily trend downward if they start to get complacent. Or if another large company decides to get heavily involved (Amazon). The whole shift from X86 to Arm will most likely hurt their desktop offerings in the long run.

It's just a matter of time till Apple is forced to allow the ability to install apps outside of their app store.
 

Alfatawi Mendel

Posts: 153   +241
What kind of Marxist, left-wing wokery is this? You'd think they would be grateful for us splitting their country up in 1950, and freeing them from Japan. But no. They think monopolies are bad...even though it's market forces at work. Bloody typical of these furrinners.
 

Kosmoz

Posts: 463   +814
What kind of Marxist, left-wing wokery is this? You'd think they would be grateful for us splitting their country up in 1950, and freeing them from Japan. But no. They think monopolies are bad...even though it's market forces at work. Bloody typical of these furrinners.
:eek::joy:🤣
 

QuantumPhysics

Posts: 5,469   +6,267
South Korea, the liberal democracy infamous for being completely undeveloped and never getting anywhere. Got it. Don't you have a 8TB SSD to go sh*tpost about?


Triggered?

The difference between you and I is that I've actually lived there.
 

Cubi Dorf

Posts: 372   +244
They can still having walled garden. Just not as profitable under this law. I would rather see competing app store than taking away incentive to have an app store at all.