Apple Targeted Over New App Store Regulation in South Korea

Apple was on a collision course with South Korea on Friday over new necessities that it cease forcing app builders to make use of its fee techniques, with a authorities official warning of a potential investigation into the iPhone maker’s compliance.

The improvement comes after South Korea amended the Telecommunication Business Act in August to attempt to curb the tech majors’ market dominance and cease the massive app retailer operators resembling Apple and Google from charging commissions on in-app purchases.

The legislation went into impact final month, however Apple had informed the South Korean authorities that it was already complying and didn’t want to alter its app retailer coverage, a Korea Communications Commission (KCC) official in cost of the matter informed Reuters.

“This goes against the purpose of the amended law,” the official mentioned, requesting anonymity because the KCC was nonetheless in talks with Apple on compliance.

The regulator would ask Apple’s South Korean unit for a brand new firm coverage giving better autonomy in fee strategies, and if Apple did not comply, would think about measures resembling a fact-finding probe as a precursor to potential fines or different penalties.

Apple didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

Google had knowledgeable the KCC that it deliberate to adjust to the legislation, together with permitting third-party fee techniques, and would talk about the matter with the regulator beginning subsequent week, the KCC official mentioned.

Google didn’t instantly reply to a Reuters’ request for remark.

Jung Jong-chae, a lawyer specialising in antitrust issues, mentioned Apple had extra to lose than Google from the Korean regulation.

“Differences between Apple and Google in willingness to give ground may be because Apple controls everything from hardware to operating system (OS) to app market to payment system,” he informed Reuters.

“And (Apple) has more to lose if its dominance breaks on any front, which could lead to calls for openness on other fronts.”

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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