FAS Russia received complaints from users of iOS devices and application developers. Applicants note that in some cases, it is cheaper to buy a product, for example, an e-book, on the seller's website, and then start reading in the application on an iPhone or iPad by logging in under your account. This is because Apple provides a commission from 15% to 30% on each payment in the App Store. But device users cannot be informed about the possibility of purchases outside the App Store.
Thus, the App Store Review Guidelines (clause 3.1), which developers of iOS applications must follow, prohibits informing application users about the availability of an alternative method of paying for goods. Apple sees such information in any form. Including if the application contains a link to the developer's / service's website or a registration form with a transition to the website in a browser.
Apple does not allow applications with such characteristics in the App Store, requiring developers to remove links or change the application's functionality so that the registration form does not lead to external sites.
By these actions, Apple restricts developers in independent behaviour, which negatively affects competition and may increase prices for developers' products.
FAS Russia issued a warning to Apple to eliminate signs of violations. The company must execute it no later than September 30th, 2021.
Similar cases are being looked at all around the world. The Japan Fair Competition Commission said Apple should provide other channels for online payment in addition to the AppStore's internal In-App Purchase technology. The regulator felt that the tech giant's payment policy change would lower prices and
benefit consumers. The dominant position of Apple in the mobile platform market is increasingly attracting the attention of regulatory authorities in different countries. On August 31st, South Korea passed a new law obliging the company to give users the option to choose an online payment method. Similar measures are pending with US lawmakers. On September 2nd, India's antitrust authority launched an investigation into Apple's in-app payments.
Source: FAS website