South Korea passes the bill to end the monopoly of Google and Apple in application payment system
After many delays, the South Korean Congress voted to pass the “Anti-Google Law”. Yes, this bill is named after the American technology giant Google. This bill prohibits app stores from forcing developers to use in-app purchase policies.
In fact, this is mainly for the application store industry monopoly giants Google and Apple. These technology companies force developers to pay them royalties on terms.
It is worth noting that the South Korean Congress finally withstood the pressure to pass this bill. It is said that Apple actually tried to lobby the US government to put pressure on the South Korean government.
In fact, there has been a lot of controversy about the in-app purchases in the Apple App Store and Google Play. For now, the European Union, the United States, South Korea, and Japan are all conducting investigations.
The reason for the investigation is that these app stores are suspected of monopolizing, that is, using the market share of their app stores on their respective platforms to force developers to agree to the terms.
The terms stipulate that developers are not allowed to use payment methods other than the platform, nor can they use other pages to guide users to open subscription services through other platforms.
If the above policy is violated, the platform can restrict or directly remove the corresponding application. The popular game Fortnite was removed by Apple because of this.
However, if the developer agrees to the platform policy, it means that they need to pay a commission fee. Apple and Google both charge a 30% commission on all payment flows.
Court documents show that Google can actually cover the operating costs of Google Play with a 6% commission. Obviously, a 30% commission will harm the interests of consumers.
The most important and practical significance of this new bill passed by the Korean National Assembly is that the platform must not force developers to use in-platform purchases in any way.
After the implementation of the bill, developers have the right to provide users with other payment methods outside the platform, and the platform shall not determine that the developer violates the regulations and removes the application directly.
Apple is naturally very repulsive of this approach in South Korea. Apple said that the bill may cause users to buy digital goods from other sources and be defrauded.
And it may leak users’ private information, make it difficult for users to manage their subscriptions, and the actual effect of Apple’s parental controls may be weakened.