Apple will keep its payment system on iOS and will not allow another outside of it

A few months ago we were following up the case between Apple and Epic Ganes on the antitrust lawsuit on payment options.

And now in more recent news Apple got a last minute suspension in a court order that would have forced the company to begin allowing iPhone and iPad app developers to direct users to other payment options.

The requirement to allow connection in the application to third-party payment systems is ordered in a September 10 ruling by the judge in Epic Games' ongoing lawsuit against Apple.

It was one of the few Epic victories, with Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers ruling in Apple's favor on most points. The judge gave Apple until December 9 to make the necessary changes. to authorize external payment systems, so this suspension comes at the last possible moment.

When Judge González Rogers dismissed Apple's initial request to stay the decision, the company appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. This call led to this new development.

Apple can now maintain the status quo at this point until the appeal is resolved, possibly in several months.

We must remember that in September, Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers issued a restraining order in Epic v Apple, placing more restrictions on Apple's App Store rules and ending months of bitter legal disputes.

As part of the new court order, Apple has a permanent restraining order "That prohibits developers from including in their applications and their buttons metadata, external links or other calls to action that direct customers to purchase mechanisms, in addition to in-application purchases" and communication with customers through contact points voluntarily obtained from customers through the account registration in the application ”.

In short, iOS apps should be able to direct users to payment options beyond what Apple offers. The injunction would take effect on December 9, unless a higher court makes a different decision.

Apple largely won this case to the point where the company came to call the decision a "resounding victory." Judge González Rogers has ruled in favor of Apple in nine of the ten claims that Epic has filed against the company. For example, the court claimed that Epic Games violated its contract with Apple when it implemented the alternative payment system in the Fortnite app.

As a result, Epic has to pay Apple 30% of all revenue collected through the system since its implementation, which amounts to more than $ 3,5 million.

However, Apple lost on an important point: the judge concluded that Apple had violated California's "anti-direction" rules and required Apple to allow developers to connect to external payment systems. Following this decision, Apple can no longer restrict iPhone owners from using its payment system (which could be a serious blow to the App Store's business model).

Additionally, in its October appeal, Apple made the user protection argument. Apple has said in its history that complying with the order could harm it and harm consumers. The company said it hopes to win an appeal challenging the order and that it wants legal process, which could take about a year.

For the publisher of the App Store, alternative means of payment, in particular available in the form of buttons pointing to external links, present certain risks. The company explains:

“If Apple can examine the links provided in the version of the application submitted for certification, nothing can prevent a developer from modifying the destination of these links or the content of the pages. Additionally, Apple cannot determine whether the user who clicked on one of these links actually received the content they paid for. «

"Apple already receives several hundred thousand requests from users every day, and allowing alternative payment methods will increase them," the company notes. It should be noted that alternative means of payment represent above all a deficit for Apple since it will not be possible to charge a commission if its payment system is not used. In addition, Apple is asking the courts for time to better assess the risks, while it studies the legal, technological and economic aspects of what it describes as a disruption in its ecosystem.

An appeals court has remained one of the most important parts of Epic v. Apple, suspending the execution of the injunction issued by the court of first instance. After the suspension, Apple can keep its IAP system as the sole source of payments built into iOS, despite the district court's earlier ruling that the exclusive agreement is illegal.

In particular, the suspension does not extend to the second part of the court order, which dealt with user communications outside of iOS.


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