This is a blow for Google and Apple: developers of applications for Google Play and the App Store can now use other payment systems in South Korea

This is a blow for Google and Apple: developers of applications for Google Play and the App Store can now use other payment systems in South Korea

As expected, the South Korean legislature passed a new law on Tuesday that prohibits Google Play and App Store owners from restricting app developers to embedded payment systems. The law is expected to be signed by President Moon Jae-in in the near future.

The law is a blow to Google and Apple, which require in-app purchases to go only through them, and not through external payment systems. At the same time, Google and Apple charge a 30 percent commission. If tech companies do not comply with the new law, they could face fines of up to 3% of their income in South Korea.

Some of the biggest opponents of app store fees are Epic Games, the developer of the popular video game Fortnite, and Spotify, which competes directly with Apple and Google’s music offerings. Epic unveiled its own payment system last year, violating Apple and Google policies, so Fortnite was removed from app stores. Epic is suing the two companies in separate lawsuits that are still ongoing.

On Twitter, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney called South Korea’s law “a milestone in the 45-year history of personal computers,” noting that the country “rejected monopolies in digital commerce and recognized open platform rights.”

Apple said the law would expose users to “the risk of fraud, undermine their privacy protections, make it difficult to manage purchases,” and undermine parental controls on its platform. The company said it has 482,000 registered developers in South Korea and has earned more than $ 7.3 billion on its platform to date. Google said the commission “lowers device costs for consumers and enables both platforms and developers to achieve financial success.”

This is a blow for Google and Apple: developers of applications for Google Play and the App Store can now use other payment systems in South Korea

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