July 23, 2024
Apple Announces Support for Alternative App Distribution in the EU

Apple Announces Support for Alternative App Distribution in the EU

Posted January 25, 2024 at 7:43pm by iClarified
Apple has announced support for Alternative App Distribution in the EU as required by the Digital Markets Act. The company does not plan on introducing support for third party app stores in the rest of world.

To reflect the DMA's changes, users in the EU can install apps from alternative app marketplaces in iOS 17.4 and later. Users will be able to download an alternative marketplace app from the marketplace developer's website. Developers can access these distribution options in App Store Connect after agreeing to relevant business terms for apps in the EU via developer.apple.com.

Developers can get started with these options in the beta release of Xcode 15.3 and iOS 17.4 starting today. The changes will become available to users in the 27 EU member countries beginning in March 2024.

Apple Announces Support for Alternative App Distribution in the EU

Here's Apple list of what's changing...

For iOS:
● New options for distributing iOS apps on alternative app marketplaces — including APIs and controls that enable developers to offer their iOS apps for download from alternative app marketplaces and help protect their intellectual property.
● New framework and APIs for creating alternative app marketplaces on iOS — enables marketplace developers to install apps and manage updates on behalf of other developers from their dedicated marketplace app, and have their app notarized for security and system integrity.
● New frameworks and APIs for alternative browser engines — interoperability that enables authorized developers to use browser engines, other than WebKit, for browser apps and apps with in-app browsing experiences.
● New APIs to enable contactless payments in the EEA — Apple is also sharing DMA-compliant changes impacting contactless payments. That includes new APIs enabling developers to use NFC technology in their banking and wallet apps throughout the European Economic Area.
● Expanded default app controls — lets users select and manage an app marketplace and/or contactless payment app as their default in Settings, and adds a new way to choose a default web browser.
● Interoperability request form — lets developers submit requests for interoperability with iPhone and iOS hardware and software features.

For Safari on iOS:
● User choice screen — provides users additional ways to choose a default web browser from a list of options.

For the App Store:
● New options for using alternative payment service providers (PSPs) — within a developer's app to process payments for digital goods and services, as an alternative to the App Store's In-App Purchase system on iOS, iPadOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS.
● New options for processing payments via link out to purchase — where users can complete a transaction for digital goods and services on the developer's external webpage as an alternative to the App Store's In-App Purchase system on iOS, iPadOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS. Developers can include information in their App Store apps to inform EU users of promotions, discounts, and other deals available outside of their app when presenting a link out.

For developer app analytics and user data portability:
● Expanded developer app analytics — provides developers with additional and enhanced metrics with more than 50 new reports from iOS and the App Store worldwide, in areas like engagement, commerce, app usage, and more.
● New user data portability API to request and transfer App Store account data — lets developers of app marketplaces request user authorization to retrieve and import new data about their usage of the App Store.

Third Party App Stores
Developers interested in creating a third party app store will still need to request an entitlement from Apple, giving the company ultimate control over the apps installed on your device. Additionally, a stand-by letter of credit from an A-rated financial institution of €1,000,000 is required, along with numerous other requirements.

New Business Terms
Apple has introduced a new set of business terms for developers who want to use third party marketplaces. Those terms come with a whole new set of fees.

The new business terms for iOS apps in the EU have three elements:
● Reduced commission — iOS apps on the App Store will pay a reduced commission of either 10 percent (for the vast majority of developers, and subscriptions following their first year) or 17 percent on transactions for digital goods and services.
● Payment processing fee — iOS apps on the App Store can use the App Store's payment processing for an additional 3 percent fee. Developers can use a payment service provider within their app or link users to their website to process payments for no additional fee to Apple.
● Core Technology Fee — iOS apps distributed from the App Store and/or an alternative app marketplace will pay €0.50 for each first annual install per year over a 1 million threshold.

The company has also provided a fee calculator for developers to compare fees under each set of business terms.

You can learn more about app distribution in the EU at the link below...

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