Following Google’s woes in the United States, South Korea is reportedly drafting a law targeting the duopoly of Google and Apple app stores. The law drafted and to be processed from July 23 prohibits operators of the application market such as Google or Apple from:
- Force a developer-specific payment method
- Prevent the developer from registering the app in other app marketplaces
- Delay the registration of the app in the app market
- Unfairly removing content from the app market
The law (as reported by joined), is being written to tackle both Apple and Google in their current state. Right now, app developers who want to launch an app are at the behest of either company with no alternatives, even when fees increase or a hostile practice is introduced. users. As regulators begin to catch up with big tech companies, control is being relinquished by companies like Apple and Google when it comes to their app markets. As regulators argue, any app that isn’t allowed into either store will have a much harder time to succeed, showing the power both companies wield in their respective operating systems.
A bill submitted to North Dakota earlier this year (which was defeated) proposed very similar legislation. The bill was under pressure from the nonprofit Coalition for App Fairness, and attention has now shifted to other states such as Arizona, Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota and Wisconsin who are considering similar legislation. The Coalition for App Fairness nonprofit is a group of companies primarily opposed to the duopoly of Apple and Google. If South Korean legislation is passed, we may see a change in the way apps are distributed on smartphones in the future. It would be the first such bill to be passed into the laws of a country, if it were drafted and accepted.
“The policy of Google and Apple to enforce payment through the app is a representative unfair act that threatens fair competition in the digital economy,” the Korea Startup Forum (via Google Translate) said. “We welcome a bill that addresses a major threat to the future of domestic startups and the content industry.”