Apple allows users in the EU to download apps through third parties

Apple has announced significant modifications to its iOS system, Safari browser, and App Store in the European Union to comply with the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA). These changes encompass over 600 new APIs, expanded app analytics, support for alternative browser engines, and new options for app payments and the distribution of iOS applications.

EU officials have stated that the Digital Markets Act paves the way for heightened competition in the internet sphere, fostering a more equitable and open digital market. Starting from March 7th, the EU will evaluate Apple’s proposal based on feedback from third parties. Should Apple’s solutions fall short, the EU is prepared to implement more stringent measures.

This move marks a significant shift for Apple, notably by allowing users for the first time to download apps from sources outside the App Store, use alternative payment systems, and more easily choose new default browsers. Additionally, Apple has reformed its commission policy that has been in place since the App Store’s inception in 2008. Initially charging developers up to a 30% commission, Apple has reduced this to 17% and plans to further decrease it to 10% after a year for most developers and subscribers.

However, alongside these commission reductions, Apple has introduced two additional charges: a 3% payment processing fee for apps using Apple’s in-app purchase system, and a 0.50 Euro installation fee for apps with over one million installations, applicable regardless of whether they are installed from the App Store or a third party. In essence, apps sold outside the App Store are exempt from additional commission fees, incurring only the 0.50 Euro charge.

Apple asserts that over 99% of developers in the EU region will see a decrease in the fees paid to Apple, with less than 1% facing the additional app installation fee.