EU Digital Rules Set To Transform Apple User Experience

EU's new digital regulations prompt Apple to modify its App Store and iOS, impacting user experience and security.

How will EU digital regulations affect Apple's App Store?

Phil Schiller, the head of Apple's App Store, has expressed concerns over the new EU Digital Markets Act (DMA), predicting a decline in user experience for Apple's product users in the EU. Schiller foresees a future where the tech giant is less effective in scam detection, attributing this to regulatory pressures compelling Apple to make unprecedented changes to its iOS mobile software, App Store, and Safari browser.

The Digital Markets Act
The Digital Markets Act is the EU’s new law to make the markets in the digital sector fairer and more contestable

Apple's Response To Regulatory Demands

In an effort to comply with the DMA, Apple is introducing significant modifications to its operating model. These changes include enabling access to alternative app stores, facilitating the use of third-party payment systems, and reducing fees for app developers. Apple's planned restructuring is designed to address the EU's stringent requirements, with Schiller highlighting the potential impact on the company's traditionally closed software ecosystem.

The Financial Implications For App Developers

Apple's adaptation to the DMA includes a revised fee structure in the EU, cutting the charge for using the App Store from 30% to 17%. However, new fees are being introduced, including a "core technology fee" and an additional charge for developers using Apple's payment processor. These changes have elicited criticism from industry figures like Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic Games, who points out the potential hindrances for developers, particularly in navigating Apple's vetting process for rival stores.

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The DMA, effective since November 2022, represents the EU's push for more competitive digital markets by imposing obligations on major online platforms. While Apple adjusts to these demands, the company plans to implement a "notarization" system for reviewing apps from alternative sources and offer users the option to avoid tracking. Additionally, changes to browser settings on Apple devices will further reflect the EU's drive for increased competition and consumer choice. As Apple navigates these regulatory waters, the broader implications for its business model and the tech industry remain a focal point of discussion.

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