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South Korea wants Apple and Google to do more to support third party payment solutions

By Roland Udvarlaki February 4, 2022, 9:00 am
South Korea and Apple, Google Source: Pocketnow

In August last year, South Korea passed a law that banned companies from preventing developers from using third-party payment providers to make in-app purchases. While neither Google nor Apple were happy with the new laws, they complied and proposed the new changes around the new laws. The big tech giants announced that they would still take their commission if users made purchases through the new payment methods, and developers would have a time limit to invoice the tech giants.

The South Korean telecommunicator raised concerns about the new tactics used by Google and Apple. It wants better compliance from the tech giants before finalizing the new rules for the law. The new law is due to be drawn up by March 15. The law hasn’t yet been finalized, but the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) believes that the plans submitted by Apple “lacks concrete details”, a KCC official told Reuters.

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KCC isn’t very happy that Apple is still planning on taking a commission, and doesn’t like that Google only reduced its commission rate by 4% when developers are using third-party payment providers. The KCC wants to make the process easy for developers to pick one solution over the other, and doesn’t want companies to entice and force developers into staying with the built-in payment solutions offered by Google and Apple.

"As a result of any policy, if app developers find it realistically difficult to use an alternative payment system and resort to using the dominant app store operator's payment system, it would not fit the law's purpose," the official said, adding that this stance would likely be reflected in the final ordinance.

It’s unclear how the KCC will be able to resolve the workarounds made by the tech giants, but it’s clear that a solution will be done sooner or later. Both Apple and Google reduced their commission fees to smaller developers who earn less than a specified threshold, typically $1 million.

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