Apple’s $100 million settlement with developers, including relaxation of App
Store’s “anti-substitution” clause is expected to be approved by the judge in the case.On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers told lawyers that she expected to approve the settlement initially. In a video call, she said: “From the current situation, in my opinion, this is a fair and good solution.”
The solution will establish a small developer assistance fund of US$100 million to distribute funds ranging from US$250 to US$30,000 to a group of developers who earn less than US$1 million from the app store. It will also lock in Apple’s 15% small business commission for apps and in-app purchases within three years.
In addition, the developer’s peace proposal also “clarified” that developers can contact customers via email or other contact information to learn about purchases outside of the App Store. Apple’s guidelines previously prohibited the promotion of alternative payment methods.
Apple’s lawyers also said that the company is committed to publishing an annual transparency report to give developers more information about search queries, results, and other data to help discover applications.
The case can be traced back to 2019, when a group of developers filed a class-action lawsuit against Apple, claiming that the $99 a year App Store fee “kills profits” and objected to the $0.99 increase in pricing. Apple announced the settlement on August 27, saying that these concessions were a response to the concerns of the developer community.
This lawsuit is not legally related to Epic v. Apple, although it covers a lot of the same content. Currently, developers are still prohibited from advertising alternative payment methods in the app until the judge’s order takes effect. However, Apple has filed an appeal and applied for a suspension of the ruling. If the suspension is not approved, the injunction on anti-substitution will take effect on December 9.