On January 25, Apple responded to the Digital Markets Act (DMA), a new EU law. The DMA requires companies with over 45 million monthly active users and a 75 billion-euro ($82 billion) market capitalization to ensure compatibility with rival apps and allow users to choose pre-installed apps. Developers were given the option to offer alternative app stores on iPhones and avoid Apple’s in-app payment system, which charges commissions up to 30%. However, they still needed to submit apps to Apple for review, facing cybersecurity checks and a “core technology fee” for major developers.

Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic Games, known for “Fortnite,” criticized Apple’s changes, considering them potentially illegal under the DMA. Sweeney expressed concerns about Apple having the power to decide which stores can compete with its App Store, potentially blocking other platforms like the Epic Games Store or Microsoft. Apple released tools for developers to adjust their business arrangements, and consumers witnessed the changes through an iOS update in March. In response to complaints from companies like Epic and Spotify about hindering business, Apple adjusted its App Store approach. In the United States, it imposed a 27% commission on proceeds from third-party website links. Meanwhile, in the EU, developers can use third-party payment processors within an App Store app without charge. Although Apple granted EU iPhone users payment flexibility, developers opting out of the App Store or payment system still incur a “core technology fee” of 50 euro cents per user account annually, with exemptions for the first 1 million user accounts and exclusions for nonprofits, schools, and governments.