Examining Apple’s payment system in the app in the App Store is in high demand among officials today, with several countries taking cards in the matter. A new report claims that India’s competition authority has also jumped on the Apple bandwagon, a move that will no doubt bring more attention to a topic that the company would rather stop talking about.
TechCrunch reported Friday that India’s Competition Commission, the country’s cartel regulator, has ordered an investigation into Apple’s payment system in the app to be carried out over the next 60 days. Apple requires that all developers in the App Store use their payment system in the app and take between 15% and 30% of all revenue from all purchases.
The Commission reportedly began investigating Apple’s practices in September, according to Reuters, after a nonprofit group called “Together We Fight Society” filed a complaint. In its completion, the group claims that Apple’s commission on payments in the app raises prices for app developers, which in turn creates barriers for market access and users.
“The existence of a 30% commission means that some app developers will never enter the market … This could also result in consumer harm,” the Together We Fight Society claimed in its complaint, which was seen by Reuters but which is not public. .
In addition, the nonprofit organization also states that Apple’s policy harms India’s payment processors, who charge much lower commissions than the big technology company.
Apple has reportedly asked the commission to drop the nonprofit’s case, TechCrunch said, because it was too small a player in India. It has a point. Only out of the 520 million smartphones in India by the end of 2020 2% were Apple devices, according to global industry research firm Counterpoint Research. Nevertheless, Apple is growing fast in the country.
If India turns out to be investigating Apple, it will join a growing number of countries – including the United States, with blockbuster Epic v. Apple case – who looks at the company’s payment system or regulates it directly. Last week, Holland ordered the company to allow dating app developers to offer users alternative payment options, a decision Apple is appealing, or risking a $ 56.5 million fine.
In Asia, South Korea passed a law this year banning Apple and Google from forcing developers to use their in-app payment systems. Meanwhile, Japan reached agreement with Apple allowing reader apps, which include magazines, newspapers, books, music and videos, worldwide to include a single external link to alternative payment options.
Gizmodo contacted Apple for a comment on Friday to confirm whether it was being investigated by India’s competition authority, and to ask for a comment on the matter, but we did not hear back at the time of publication. We will make sure to update this article if we do.