Apple Has to Change Some App Store Rules

Apple needs to change some of the App Store rules, a U.S. federal judge ruled. The verdict is forcing the company to allow developers to send their users to other payment systems. This is a partial win for Fortnite creator Epic Games and other app makers.

The judge, however, did not require Apple to let app makers use their own in-app payment systems, one of Epic's top requests, and allowed Apple to continue to charge commissions of 15% to 30% for its own in-app payment system. Epic said it would appeal the ruling.

The ruling expands a concession made to streaming video companies, allowing them to direct users to outside payment methods. The decision expands that exemption to all developers, including the game developers who are the biggest cash generators for Apple's App Store.

The judge ruled that Apple can no longer bar developers from providing buttons or links in their apps that direct customers to other ways to pay outside of Apple's own in-app purchase system. The ruling also said Apple cannot ban developers from communicating with customers via contact information obtained by the developers when customers signed up within the app.

"As the Court recognized ‘success is not illegal. Apple faces rigorous competition in every segment in which we do business, and we believe customers and developers choose us because our products and services are the best in the world," Apple said in a statement.

Apple's legal team doesn't believe the ruling forces it to allow developers to implement their own in-app purchase systems. Apple officials said the company is still debating how it will implement the requirements of the ruling and whether it will appeal.

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