Spotify says Apple a 'monopolist' in escalating war of words

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  • Reply 121 of 146
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,314member
    hexclock said:
    25 billion valuation, 5 billion in revenues and they still don’t make a profit. Yet somehow it’s Apple’s fault. Okay, then. 
    Well, they seem to be making big long-play risks backed by venture capital. They ran through hundreds of millions recently on Anchor and Gimlet. So, expect them to try something big in the podcast space (and of course, Apple is the big target there).

    I don't know how much money they bring in via subscriptions, but I'm guessing ad-revenue plays into this valuation? Or, at least dollar-signs in the eyes of investors around ads?

    CheeseFreeze said:
    Fifteen years ago Microsoft was fined for pushing their browser product via their own operating system. Compared to this that was child’s play.
    There was a bit more to it than that. Microsoft was like 90% market-share and was pulling all kinds of shenanigans from the OS level to the distributor level. They were even pressuring into controlling the Web via code from IE designed to make websites M$ only. I don't think that was child's play at all compared to this. What market are we talking about where Apple has that kind of share, and is using it to control the entire industry? Phones? Music? I don't see it.

    genovelle said:
    Actually it’s very easy for them to get their app on the store for free. Do their own marketing in each country, direct customers to their website and sign them up. Then send them to the App Store to download the App. Apple makes zero and the have complete control of the subscription, customer data and relationship. This has been an option since day one and lots of companies use it. Apple doesn’t care. Bring Your Own Customers for free. 
    Bingo.
    For a small company, Apple's system is a huge advantage, as Apple takes on all the payment/distribution costs, and even some of the marketing. For big companies (like Spotify), the deal is less attractive, as they'd rather save some of that money they already invest in infrastructure. BUT, just because they'd like to save some of that money, doesn't mean that is Apple's fault. Like you say, they can 'easily' just go do it themselves. They are wanting to 'have their cake and eat it too'.

    irnchriz said:
    IOS is Apples platform.  They control it 100% and do not license it out.  If you want to look for existing examples of this then you can use Microsoft and the Xbox, Sony and the PlayStation and Nintendo.  

    If if you wish to ship your applications/games on these platforms you pay the platform owner, whether digital distribution or physical media, the platform owner collects a fee per title.  You also have to have the title tested and passed before the platform owner allows it on their platform.  IOS is no different.

    if the EU were to rule against Apple it would open the door for attacks against the policies of the aforementioned companies and their monopolies on their own platforms.
    Yeah, but just don't bet the EU won't rule this way or that way. Logic and common sense isn't exactly driving things in those courts.

    tehabe said:
    On a German news site Spotify also mentions that Apple once used push notification to advertise their music service. Something no 3rd party developer is allowed to do. The statement by Apple is ridiculous, they don't even mention that they run a competitor to Spotify. I mean there are a lot of weird rules on the iOS App Store, for example, that the Chrome browser has an age restriction to 17, while every iPhone/iOS comes with a browser. Or that those 3rd party browsers can't use their own rendering engine but have to use an API from iOS.
    Oh yeah, Apple does abuse their power when it comes to what apps are allowed and what aren't and stuff like that. But, isn't that their right to control the content on their platform as they see fit? It isn't 'fair' but I don't see anything illegal or monopolistic about that. For example, Facebook gets to stay while violating the rules in a way that any little developer would have been booted. They shut down Alex Jones. etc. But, fair and legal are sometimes different things.

    tehabe said:
    This is exactly the issue. You can sign up for Spotify outside the App Store but you can't get the application out side the App Store. Also this makes the subscription process more complicated than it for e.g. Apple Music.
    Or, they can just use an in-app purchase. Simple. This has zero to do with ease of use for the customer, it has to do with Spotify not wanting to pay the fee.
    Anyone who Spotify attracted (as a customer) via their own means will have an account already and just sign-in.

    avon b7 said:
    But do you have choice when developing for iOS?
    The entirety of your post avoids the central issue.
    Umm, what monopoly are we talking about here... a monopoly from a consumer perspective, or one from a developer perspective? The developer can create apps for any number of platforms. And, like the other analogies above, how is this any different than making video games for Playstation, Xbox, etc?
  • Reply 122 of 146
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 21,302member
    macxpress said:
    I think Spotify would be better off spending what's left of their VC account trying to see how to actually make money using the methods provided to them than waste money on a court case that may not end up in their favor. 

    Apple may or may not be a monopoly, but even if they aren't they (Spotify) has to prove Apple is using that monopoly against Spotify to shove them out of the music space. Its not illegal to have a monopoly and I think some here just think monopolies are illegal in every definition of the word. Thats simply not true. 
    Spotify doesn't have to prove anything. It's been put in the hands of the EU Commission's competition folks to proceed with or not. This isn't Spotify filing a court case against Apple. 
  • Reply 123 of 146
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,314member
    danox said:
    It's Apple's store they don't need Spotify, if they (Spotify) are unhappy leave and use the unprofitable Android app store.
    Exactly... and using this, we can see who benefits more here. If Spotify were to pull their app, who would suffer more? Would iPhone users ditch their phones to get an Android so they could run Spotify again? Or, would Spotify go under because they just lost a massive segment of their audience?

    Abalos65 said:
    IAP purchases could also be brought back, though it should clearly state that $3 would go to Apple. But at the very least it should be possible for Spotify to mention in the app that it is possible to sign up on their website. 
    Yes, that could be a compromise, if a compromise is needed. They could just have some text that says you can purchase here, or via the Spotify website, or something like that.

    gatorguy said:
    Spotify doesn't have to prove anything. It's been put in the hands of the EU Commission's competition folks to proceed with or not. This isn't Spotify filing a court case against Apple. 
    And... people wonder, why Brexit?
    nasserae
  • Reply 124 of 146
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else.
    You can’t buy legit apps on android except from the play store.  How about amazon devices you can only get apps from the Amazon app store. Yes you can circumvent those platforms and download apps from 3rd party sites, but you put you device and your personal I formation at a huge risk. So please explains how that is monopolistic. 

    Apple supplies a platform for developers to create and distribute their apps which allows their users to download or purchase items securely. 
    edited March 17
  • Reply 125 of 146
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,158member
    avon b7 said:
    crowley said:
    tehabe said:
    urahara said:
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else. On the other hand, Spotify is not a monopolist, there are many music streaming services on the market, including Apple Music who are competing with Spotify. And currently i it is doubtful if you could charge more than $10 per month for music streaming.
    When it comes to sell Big Mac in the McDonalds, it is a monopolist. By your logic.
    By 'correct' logic - McDonalds is the owner. Apple is the owner of their platform. It has absolutely nothing to do with monopoly. 
    You didn't get my point. There is no other way for Spotify to get there application on an iOS device than Apple's App Store. That is the monopoly part. This is also true for the Play Store on Android. Even though you could side load applications on Android, it is off by default and not recommended, so the Play Store is the only store for applications on Android and therefor a monopoly.

    McDonald's is not a monopoly because there are other fast food chains and restaurants on the market. it would be different for example, if McDonald's had an exclusive contract with a mall and would be the only store on the food court.
    Fraid not, as kids would say.  Your argument about McDonald’s plays out like this...  Hot dog shack (a fictional small restaurant) sees that MacDonalds has a huge number of customers attracted to their restaurants, and so goes to McD’s management and says, “how can we sell our dogs to your huge customer base, inside your stores?”  And McD’s says, “just pay us 30% and you’re in.”

    So for a while Hot Dog Shack does that and everyone is happy.  But then one day MacDonald’s decides to start selling hot dogs too.  Now HDS is pissed, and they want the government to step in and demand equal access.  After all, MacDonald’s doesn’t have a 30% surcharge to make up when selling their own dogs.  

    But here’s the rub.  For all the food sold inside the MacDonald’s restaurants, MacDonald’s is doing the marketing spend to pull in those customers.  HDS might do its own marketing, to promote its own locations, but it doesn’t have to do any marketing to tell customers to come to a MacDonald’s, because plenty are already there, drawn in by MacDonald’s marketing efforts, which MacDonald’s pays for 100%. 

    So by demanding equal access, HDS is basically asking to have their kiosks selling their products in MacDonald’s restaurants without paying the 30% tariff that supports MacDonald’s rents, insurance, marketing, upkeep, etc. 

    Do you know what MacDonald’s is gonna do?  Kick HDS out.  Bye bye.  I do wonder whether Apple has in its contract the ability to eject any app, for any reason or purpose it sees fit, from its platform.  Bye bye, we no longer wish to do business with you! 
    Ugh, I hate these analogies that spin out of control.  You are missing one notable thing however, hardware.  The apps sold in the App Store can only run on Apple hardware, therefore a symbiotic relationship has developed, apps drive sales of hardware, and hardware drive sales of apps.  And since Apple make the majority of their money from hardware, and the app store is effectively the only way to get apps on that hardware, the situation with the app store is far more complicated than fast food. 

    Even if Spotify aren't able to make anything of this legally, I think Apple are treating their developer community pretty badly here.  Time to shape up.
    Developers are being treated badly? Developers are being treated like gods today, especially when compared to how they're treated when they had to sell their products in a box at stores. Even then, if you are a developer that makes an application for free, you're treated like royalty. You pay the developer fee to Apple, then you get access to hundreds of milions of people, you don't have to pay bandwidth costs or hosting to push the application out to customers, you don't have to worry about security concerns with hosting the application, you don't have to set up some review system or integrate one into your site. Then if you want to add an in app purchases to allow customers to support you, you don't have to set up a payment processor, you don't have to get your customers to input any payment information, you don't have to worry about international pricing or taxes, they just click on a button and pay.
    But do you have choice when developing for iOS?

    The entirety of your post avoids the central issue.
    Yes. Web Apps. If Spotify want to take advantage of iOS API then they have to play by Apple rules.
  • Reply 126 of 146
    normmnormm Posts: 575member
    bwik said:

    Spotify makes an interesting argument.  If HBO Now was downloaded from Apple (a fairly small service by Apple), does it mean Apple collects 30% of revenue for the first year and 15% thereafter?  If so, that seems excessive, just for providing a download portal to its users.  Apple could then compete with HBO on a lower cost structure and do its own shows, which apparently it is doing.  Netflix, same?  How about Amazon Prime revenue? 

    There is precedent to suggest that Apple can't simply charge a 30% toll on all the revenue producing activities that happen across iOS.  Apple has some arguments that it created the platform.  The literature on railroad competition provides many examples of monopolistic pricing that had to be made illegal.  Usually the solution is to remove the barrier to entry, or if that is impractical (as building totally duplicate rail lines is somewhat impractical), to allow multiple carriers (= other App Stores) on the platform.

    Spotify may be right that the current status quo on iOS App Store may be illegal.  Just my opinion as a hobbyist on these topics, not a professional.

    I agree.  This is essentially the net neutrality argument: if you provide the platform, you shouldn't favor your content.  A high "tax-rate" for popular media vendors is also end-user hostile, since it encourages them to not offer convenient in-app purchases.
  • Reply 127 of 146
    tehabetehabe Posts: 19member
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else.
    You can’t buy legit apps on android except from the play store.  How about amazon devices you can only get apps from the Amazon app store. Yes you can circumvent those platforms and download apps from 3rd party sites, but you put you device and your personal I formation at a huge risk. So please explains how that is monopolistic. 

    Apple supplies a platform for developers to create and distribute their apps which allows their users to download or purchase items securely. 
    I already said, that Google's Play Store is as monopolistic as Apple's iOS App Store. They are monopolistic b/c third party developers have no other choice but to use those platforms. And on both platforms Apple and Google offer also their own software.
  • Reply 128 of 146
    urahara said:
    I say let the lawyers decide it. But I stand with apple over here. Apple doesn’t own a monopoly on any market. If you don’t like their rules don’t play in it. 
     Funny enough ,Spotify’s iOS app is much better than the Droid version last time I checked.
    Last time I checked there is one App Store on iOS. Their ecosystem is closed. Since 2007 Apple has become a dominant player. They practically invented the mobile phone as we know it today. They are more than a “vendor”, they are the true definition of a monopoly with the market share they have and their current practices should have been addressed a long time ago. 

    You should try to be more emphatic towards developers. Because “if you don’t like their rules don’t play in it” is a very simplistic, one-dimensional view on this matter. What is really the developers’ option here? That’s only Google Play, and they serve a different audience and also ask 30%. Those two are the true options here. If you think that’s healthy then sorry, I can’t take you seriously. 

    hexclock said:
    25 billion valuation, 5 billion in revenues and they still don’t make a profit. Yet somehow it’s Apple’s fault. Okay, then. 
    Spotify is not claiming they don’t make a profit as a company because of Apple. You just made that up. However they do have problems with Apple unfair business practices, and I wholeheartedly agree with them. 

    Fact is, the mobile market today consists of two dominant, monopolistic ecosystems, one serving Android users and one serving iOS users (assuming we ignore China). Both are beyond vendor status and have a vast market share. Developers are forced to publish through those two options, both taking 30%. 
    Ecosystems of this size should be commercially open. 

    Fifteen years ago Microsoft was fined for pushing their browser product via their own operating system. Compared to this that was child’s play. Apple needs to change this and I hope the EU will start to break this idiotic system down.

    Apple either needs to accept other commercial stores on iOS and/or lower their margins considerably so they are more cost based. Yes this comes with severe security concerns that need to be addressed technically, but at least it creates a fair market.  

    Reading your comment some people might become convinced that you are smart and that’s why what you are rigging is correct. 

    I laughed at your words there are “two monopolistic...”. You are also claiming that Apple is a true definition of monopoly. 

    To correct that statement, I would like to point out that the true definition of monopoly emphasizes only ONE player!

    So what you did: you sided with Spotify and than tried to find explanations for your biased view. While doing so you based your explanations on the incorrect definitions. But you wrapped in a well structured way to sound believable. 
    Your comment makes no sense. Ofcourse I mentioned TWO, because they serve entire different platforms and both have a monopoly within their own platform. 

    I have run a successful game studio for 12 years operating internationally, and sold it end of 2017. Since 2009 we focused on mobile. So although I don’t claim to own the truth like anyone else, I sure as hell know a lot about the business and most likely much more than you. 
  • Reply 129 of 146
    chaickachaicka Posts: 167member
    kruegdude said:
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else. On the other hand, Spotify is not a monopolist, there are many music streaming services on the market, including Apple Music who are competing with Spotify. And currently i it is doubtful if you could charge more than $10 per month for music streaming.
    Actually that’s not true. You can jailbreak your iPhone and use other app stores. 
    If memory serves me well, one of those alternative App Store closed down recently in 2018, citing the efforts and cost to maintain is no longer viable.
  • Reply 130 of 146
    chaickachaicka Posts: 167member
    Perhaps I am too simple minded to get what all these fuss is about.

    I choose Apple’s platform for what it is and how it is. If I have wanted choice of app stores or uncontrolled installation of apps which puts security and privacy at risk, I would have gone down the Android path.

    It’s that simple. And it’s the same approach I tells my family members. It’s their choice and they can jolly well support and be accountable for their own choice of platforms/devices.
  • Reply 131 of 146
    davidwdavidw Posts: 977member
    robbyx said:
    Lots of interesting arguments being made.  Now that Apple is both providing the platform and competing directly with third party apps and services on the platform, the waters are being muddied.  I suspect that this is just a taste of what's to come in the future concerning Apple and its "monopoly".

    I think the comparisons to Microsoft in the 90s are somewhat valid.  Microsoft provided the platform (Windows) and leveraged that position to favor Internet Explorer.  After buying a PC that came preloaded with Internet Explorer, that customer could still download Netscape, but how many did?  Clearly not enough to keep Netscape afloat.  The situation isn't much different with iOS and Apple Music.  Now that a music service comes bundled with iOS and signing up is one tap away, there's less incentive for the user to seek out another service.

    Apple is clearly using its platform monopoly to favor Apple Music, which is pretty much exactly what Microsoft did with Internet Explorer.  Who makes the underlying hardware is irrelevant if we're looking at things in terms of the platform/OS.  Sure, a software developer can say, "No Apple for me, I'm Android only!" but that's like saying "No Windows for me, I'm Mac only!" back in the 90s.  A few brave souls managed to make it work, but if you wanted access to a broad customer base who spent money on third party software, you needed to be on the Windows platform.  It's the same thing with mobile today.  If you want to make money as a developer, you need to be on iOS.

    When it comes to Apple's percentage of the sale, I don't think you can compare the App Store to retail or Amazon.  The fact is, if you don't like Amazon's terms, you can go make a deal with Target or Walmart to sell your product.  You can also start your own online store and not pay anyone a cut.  If you're developing for the Mac, Windows, Android, and pretty much every other OS, this holds true.  However, if you're an iOS developer, you have no choice.  You must agree to every one of Apple's terms or you're completely shut out of the platform.  People defending Apple here should think long and hard about what kind of future they want.  I appreciate the security aspects of the App Store model, but I also don't believe that it's in the best interest of the consumer, or society in general, for one company to have unregulated control over a platform.  We've never seen anything like this before.  Microsoft never had the kind of control over what happens on Windows PCs that Apple has over iOS devices.

    Just because Apple built the platform, that doesn't mean they should be able to do whatever they want.  As someone pointed out, it's a bit like the railroads back in the day.  They thought (and I'm sure they had their defenders back then too) that since they built it, they should be able to own and control everything.  I'm sure people said "well, if you don't like it, just build your own railroad", just as some suggest today that Spotify should build its own OS and hardware.  This specious argument completely ignores reality.  There comes a point where it's essentially impossible to compete against something that has become completely entrenched.  No one managed to displace Windows despite the fact that several better (from a technical standpoint anyway) solutions came along.

    Whatever happens from here, I think it's safe to say that Apple will face increased scrutiny, pressure, and legal challenges over their "walled garden".
    You are not comparing apples to apples. Microsoft got in trouble with IE (other than for the abuse of their monopoly with Windows) because Windows was a monopoly in the whole computer OS market. Not because MS had a monopoly with Windows, on PC's. So you can not say that the monopoly Apple has with iOS, is the same as the monopoly MS has with Windows, because iOS is not a monopoly in the mobile OS market. Where as Windows is a monopoly in the computer (desktops and laptops) OS market. 

    It's Google with Android, that is in the same position as MS with Windows. In terms of having a monopoly.

    Even in the EU, Apple is allow to pre-install Safari with OS X because OS X is not considered a monopoly, because Macs do not have a monopoly. But by your logic, Apple should not be able to do that because Apple has a monopoly with OS X, just as MS has a monopoly with Windows. That is comparing apples to oranges. 

    It seems that a lot of people here that are against against Apple do not truly understand what constitutes a monopoly that must adhered to anti-trust laws. The "monopoly" Apple have with iOS is not a true monopoly in the marketplace, unless iOS itself is a monopoly in the mobile OS marketplace. And that market is the whole market, not just what market share they have in the US or any other fragment of the marketplace.   

    If Spotify have access to the Android market, which they do, then they have access to over 75% of the mobile OS users in the marketplace. They can not cry "monopoly", because they don't have easy access to the other 20%. 

    On the other hand, Apple Music is available on Android devices and Apple must pay the same 30% cut to Google, if Apple wants to be able to have Apple Music subscribers  pay for their subscription inside the Google Play Store. And Google also have their own competing music streaming app. And this in order for Apple to access 75% of the mobile OS market, not 20%. Do you see Apple crying about monopoly and anti-trust violations, when they would have a much better case than Spotify?

    Do you hear Spotify crying about also having to pay Google, if they want Android users to have the ability to pay for their Spotify subscription through the Google Play Store? Android users do not have to pay for their Spotify subscriptions inside the Google Play Store, the same as iOS users do not have to pay for their Spotify subscriptions inside  the Apple App Store. And both Android and iOS users have access to their subscription Spotify streaming app for free, in their respective app stores, if they pay for their subscriptions elsewhere. 

    The Costco Kirkland brand batteries competes with other brand batteries in the Costco stores. Costco has an advantage selling their own brand. Should Costco not be allowed to sell their Kirkland brand batteries in Costco because it unfairly competes with the other brand of batteries they sell? No ....... because Costco is not a monopoly and Costco customers can shop for batteries in other stores. If anything, Costco could not allow other brand of batteries to be sold in their own stores and those other brands would not be able to do a thing about it.

    Even though it can be said that Costco has a monopoly with the shoppers that shop at Costco, that is not a monopoly in the marketplace. Costco shoppers can shop at other stores for other brands of batteries. Just as iOS users can switch to Android, if iOS do not have the apps they want. Can DuraCells place a placard by the batteries they sell at Costco, advertising to Costco customers that they can buy the same batteries cheaper online? Of course not. So long as Costco is not a monopoly in the marketplace, venders that wants to sell their products at Costco, must adhere to the rules set by Costco. Just as Apple do not have a monopoly in the mobile OS marketplace, Apple can set the rules to access their App store.   

    If anyone has the right to cry "monopoly" and anti-trust, concerning Apple "monopoly" with iOS, are the iOS users that can only load and buy apps from the Apple App Store.  But they don't stand a chance of winning because nothing prevents them from switching to Android. 75% of mobile users are on Android. There is no barrier for iOS users to switch. It would be like Mac users complaining that Apple has a monopoly on with the OS on their Macs and they can't switch to a PC. That is not the same as PC users saying MS has a monopoly with Windows on PC's, because MS actually has a monopoly, (by the true definition of a monopoly in the marketplace), on PC's and it was difficult for PC users to switch to a Mac or linux.  

    Developers desire iOS users because of the environment Apple created and is maintaining to attract iOS users. If they want access to iOS users accounts, then they have to pay Apple. Its no different than advertisers having to pay Google to access Google users. Google created an environment of free stuff for their users, in order to collect data on them, so they can charge advertisers extra to reach a targeted audience. You don't expect Google to give away the data they have on their users for free, do you?  Facebook charges advertisers to advertise on Facebook. Do you expect Facebook to allow advertisers to advertise in the environment that Facebook created and allow account holders to use it for free? Facebook created the environment and can limit who has access to it. Facebook users might complain about advertising but advertisers can not complain about not having free access to the people with Facebook accounts. You really don't expect Amazon to allow anyone to access their customers accounts for free, do you? What about eBay, you think eBay should allow any sellers, to sell their stuff on eBay, for free? I'm sure a lot of vendors would like to sell their stuff to eBay account holders, without paying eBay a commission.

    No one managed to displace Windows? That depends on how you define a computer. iOS and Android has easily displaced Windows OS monopoly, if one counts smartphones and tablets as "computers". Where as IE was once on 85% of the desktop computers, even after MS was charged with anti-trust violation concerning IE, now Chrome is on 70% of the desktop computers. MS Windows Mobile CE was once on over 90% of the mobile phones. I think it's now 0%. Though there might be some Windows mobile CE phones out there, they are no longer supported by MS.

    Remember this .....

    edited March 18
  • Reply 132 of 146
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else.
    You can’t buy legit apps on android except from the play store.  How about amazon devices you can only get apps from the Amazon app store. Yes you can circumvent those platforms and download apps from 3rd party sites, but you put you device and your personal I formation at a huge risk. So please explains how that is monopolistic. 

    Apple supplies a platform for developers to create and distribute their apps which allows their users to download or purchase items securely. 
    chaicka said:
    Perhaps I am too simple minded to get what all these fuss is about.

    I choose Apple’s platform for what it is and how it is. If I have wanted choice of app stores or uncontrolled installation of apps which puts security and privacy at risk, I would have gone down the Android path.

    It’s that simple. And it’s the same approach I tells my family members. It’s their choice and they can jolly well support and be accountable for their own choice of platforms/devices.
    I do not get how allowing third party installs is inherently insecure. I get that it increases some small percentage of installing a malicious program, however good OS design and protection should limit the damage those can cause. I would for example say that MacOS is a secure operating system while allowing third party installs. Why would this be different for mobile operating systems?
  • Reply 133 of 146
    tehabetehabe Posts: 19member
    chaicka said:
    Perhaps I am too simple minded to get what all these fuss is about.

    I choose Apple’s platform for what it is and how it is. If I have wanted choice of app stores or uncontrolled installation of apps which puts security and privacy at risk, I would have gone down the Android path.

    It’s that simple. And it’s the same approach I tells my family members. It’s their choice and they can jolly well support and be accountable for their own choice of platforms/devices.
    The problem is not, that the iOS App Store is the only source for software on iOS. The problem is, on which rules third party software developer can use the iOS App Store for distributing their software . Spotify claims that Apple giving them a disadvantage over Apple's own Apple Music service.

    I think those claims have merits because the iOS App Store is a monopoly for iOS software distribution. The question is, should Apple be allowed to use their own App Store with different rules than 3rd party developers or should they all follow the same rules and who is allowed to change the rules?
  • Reply 134 of 146
    davidwdavidw Posts: 977member
    Abalos65 said:
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else.
    You can’t buy legit apps on android except from the play store.  How about amazon devices you can only get apps from the Amazon app store. Yes you can circumvent those platforms and download apps from 3rd party sites, but you put you device and your personal I formation at a huge risk. So please explains how that is monopolistic. 

    Apple supplies a platform for developers to create and distribute their apps which allows their users to download or purchase items securely. 
    chaicka said:
    Perhaps I am too simple minded to get what all these fuss is about.

    I choose Apple’s platform for what it is and how it is. If I have wanted choice of app stores or uncontrolled installation of apps which puts security and privacy at risk, I would have gone down the Android path.

    It’s that simple. And it’s the same approach I tells my family members. It’s their choice and they can jolly well support and be accountable for their own choice of platforms/devices.
    I do not get how allowing third party installs is inherently insecure. I get that it increases some small percentage of installing a malicious program, however good OS design and protection should limit the damage those can cause. I would for example say that MacOS is a secure operating system while allowing third party installs. Why would this be different for mobile operating systems?
    No OS is safe from malicious programs, if the user chooses to install the software. OSX is more secure than Windows because it is much harder to install any software, without the users knowledge. But once the user chooses to install the software, nothing is preventing malware or viruses from being installed, along with whatever the user was installing.

    This is why the users has to be careful of where they get the software they were installing from. There is a difference in how safe the software is of malicious programs when  downloading the software from torrent vs getting it from the Apple App Store (or Google Play Store). The software in the app stores are checked for malicious programs, as best as Apple and Google are able to, before they are allowed in the app stores. Just like there is a difference in security from installing software from an official retail install disc from Best Buy vs a copy of the disc from eBay or craigslist.

    Even spyware embedded in programs, have manage to get through Apple App Store security check, every so often. Just who is going to check for spyware when you download the install software from a third party site?  

    I think you are thinking about how safe the web site is, when visiting it to download software. That is not the insecure part of allowing third party downloads of software. The insecurity comes from downloading and installing software with the malicious programs embedded in the software.  No OS will stop that installation of those malicious programs, once the user chooses to install that software.  



    edited March 18
  • Reply 135 of 146
    croprcropr Posts: 966member
    Developers are being treated badly? Developers are being treated like gods today, especially when compared to how they're treated when they had to sell their products in a box at stores. Even then, if you are a developer that makes an application for free, you're treated like royalty. You pay the developer fee to Apple, then you get access to hundreds of milions of people, you don't have to pay bandwidth costs or hosting to push the application out to customers, you don't have to worry about security concerns with hosting the application, you don't have to set up some review system or integrate one into your site. Then if you want to add an in app purchases to allow customers to support you, you don't have to set up a payment processor, you don't have to get your customers to input any payment information, you don't have to worry about international pricing or taxes, they just click on a button and pay.
    i am a developer.  In summer I will launch a new application that manages the annual general meetings of large NPO's and associations.  This application includes a voting system, enabling all members to vote on the different topics discussed during this annual meeting.  It is obvious that all members must have the opportunity to vote, so I am planning a version for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android. 

    People don't become member of an NPO because they have a iPhone, so the argument that iOS brings me customers is in this case void.
     
    I am totally free how to distribute the voting application Windows, Mac, and Linux,  a little less free on Android (I could opt to offer a side-load of the app, but I don't) but I must use the iOS App Store for iOS.  So from a viewpoint of the app developer the App Store is distribution monopoly.  As such this is not an issue as long as the rules are clear and fair.   But the business practices imposed by he App Store guidelines are not so fair for the app developer:  I cannot launch a startup package (first annual meeting at half the price), I have to use the Apple payment processor with a 30% cut, from within the app I cannot  link to the website where the customer could pay for a new annual meeting, ... For me this is far worse than treating the app developer badly.

    The argument of security is a fake argument.  For account management, app distribution and payment I have a secure cloud solution for the other platforms. I have no savings whatsoever on the iOS platform.  On the contrary I have the extra work to integrate and test the Apple Payment API, because I cannot reuse the secure payment processor API that I am using for all the other platforms.

    In this particular case, I could work around the iOS limitations and decided to cut down the features of the iOS version of the application.  On iOS people can view the agenda and vote for the topics, but they cannot create new meetings or or perform any member management.  As such I am avoiding the extra integration work and the exorbitant 30% Apple tax.   But not all app developers have this option


    tehabeminisu1980
  • Reply 136 of 146
    RadcapperRadcapper Posts: 2unconfirmed, member
    bwik said:

    Spotify makes an interesting argument.  If HBO Now was downloaded from Apple (a fairly small service by Apple), does it mean Apple collects 30% of revenue for the first year and 15% thereafter?  If so, that seems excessive, just for providing a download portal to its users.  Apple could then compete with HBO on a lower cost structure and do its own shows, which apparently it is doing.  Netflix, same?  How about Amazon Prime revenue? 

    There is precedent to suggest that Apple can't simply charge a 30% toll on all the revenue producing activities that happen across iOS.  Apple has some arguments that it created the platform.  The literature on railroad competition provides many examples of monopolistic pricing that had to be made illegal.  Usually the solution is to remove the barrier to entry, or if that is impractical (as building totally duplicate rail lines is somewhat impractical), to allow multiple carriers (= other App Stores) on the platform.

    Spotify may be right that the current status quo on iOS App Store may be illegal.  Just my opinion as a hobbyist on these topics, not a professional.

    What kind of an a-hole one must be to cry about monopoly bullshit ! No monopoly can exist as long as there is free market. Apple innovated and are in this place. If you do not agree get the f out of the market or innovate and compete with them. Only incompetent talk about monopoly and crap. 
  • Reply 137 of 146
    RadcapperRadcapper Posts: 2unconfirmed, member
    This is why i'm going to vote for elizabeth warren, to break up these big greedy companies like apple
    Stupid. Can you explain what is wrong with what Apple did ?
  • Reply 138 of 146
    cropr said:
    Developers are being treated badly? Developers are being treated like gods today, especially when compared to how they're treated when they had to sell their products in a box at stores. Even then, if you are a developer that makes an application for free, you're treated like royalty. You pay the developer fee to Apple, then you get access to hundreds of milions of people, you don't have to pay bandwidth costs or hosting to push the application out to customers, you don't have to worry about security concerns with hosting the application, you don't have to set up some review system or integrate one into your site. Then if you want to add an in app purchases to allow customers to support you, you don't have to set up a payment processor, you don't have to get your customers to input any payment information, you don't have to worry about international pricing or taxes, they just click on a button and pay.
    i am a developer.  In summer I will launch a new application that manages the annual general meetings of large NPO's and associations.  This application includes a voting system, enabling all members to vote on the different topics discussed during this annual meeting.  It is obvious that all members must have the opportunity to vote, so I am planning a version for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android. 

    People don't become member of an NPO because they have a iPhone, so the argument that iOS brings me customers is in this case void.
     
    I am totally free how to distribute the voting application Windows, Mac, and Linux,  a little less free on Android (I could opt to offer a side-load of the app, but I don't) but I must use the iOS App Store for iOS.  So from a viewpoint of the app developer the App Store is distribution monopoly.  As such this is not an issue as long as the rules are clear and fair.   But the business practices imposed by he App Store guidelines are not so fair for the app developer:  I cannot launch a startup package (first annual meeting at half the price), I have to use the Apple payment processor with a 30% cut, from within the app I cannot  link to the website where the customer could pay for a new annual meeting, ... For me this is far worse than treating the app developer badly.

    The argument of security is a fake argument.  For account management, app distribution and payment I have a secure cloud solution for the other platforms. I have no savings whatsoever on the iOS platform.  On the contrary I have the extra work to integrate and test the Apple Payment API, because I cannot reuse the secure payment processor API that I am using for all the other platforms.

    In this particular case, I could work around the iOS limitations and decided to cut down the features of the iOS version of the application.  On iOS people can view the agenda and vote for the topics, but they cannot create new meetings or or perform any member management.  As such I am avoiding the extra integration work and the exorbitant 30% Apple tax.   But not all app developers have this option


    This was a well thought out reply. Your are missing a big consideration by saying "Security is a fake argument". You believe your cloud solution, payment processor, website, etc to be safe and secure. This is your opinion and will not necessarily be shared by the consumer. There is a good chance that your product and company are not well know to the public in general, likely not even your target market since you stated this is a new application.

    Apple on the other hand is known by every potential customer that might use your iOS app. These customers have already made the decision to trust Apple with their payment information. I would go on to say that the overwhelming majority of iOS users put a significant value on the efforts Apple makes to keep the App Store a safe, secure and hassle free experience. Many Apple users may have even based a large portion of their device purchasing decision on this. Potential users from the iOS platform, and to a much lesser extent Mac, are distinct in this way from the other platforms you distribute on. No one expects Windows and Android to be secure. It is understood that if you install most anything downloaded you are rolling the dice, even more so if it is from a unknown, to the general public, developer/company. A truly insignificant percentage of the population uses Linux, so there is no money to be made on that platform anyway, at least for programs aimed at the average consumer. I purchase a few hundred dollars worth of apps each year and the App Store makes it an extremely low risk proposition. The fact is if not for the App Store experience these purchase simply would never be made, a great deal of iOS users feel the same way. If it makes the "Apple Tax" more bearable, you can think of it as a insurance policy iOS users expect Apple to provide to them so they can feel comfortable taking a chance on purchasing your product.


     

  • Reply 139 of 146
    croprcropr Posts: 966member
    cropr said:
    Developers are being treated badly? Developers are being treated like gods today, especially when compared to how they're treated when they had to sell their products in a box at stores. Even then, if you are a developer that makes an application for free, you're treated like royalty. You pay the developer fee to Apple, then you get access to hundreds of milions of people, you don't have to pay bandwidth costs or hosting to push the application out to customers, you don't have to worry about security concerns with hosting the application, you don't have to set up some review system or integrate one into your site. Then if you want to add an in app purchases to allow customers to support you, you don't have to set up a payment processor, you don't have to get your customers to input any payment information, you don't have to worry about international pricing or taxes, they just click on a button and pay.
    i am a developer.  In summer I will launch a new application that manages the annual general meetings of large NPO's and associations.  This application includes a voting system, enabling all members to vote on the different topics discussed during this annual meeting.  It is obvious that all members must have the opportunity to vote, so I am planning a version for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android. 

    People don't become member of an NPO because they have a iPhone, so the argument that iOS brings me customers is in this case void.
     
    I am totally free how to distribute the voting application Windows, Mac, and Linux,  a little less free on Android (I could opt to offer a side-load of the app, but I don't) but I must use the iOS App Store for iOS.  So from a viewpoint of the app developer the App Store is distribution monopoly.  As such this is not an issue as long as the rules are clear and fair.   But the business practices imposed by he App Store guidelines are not so fair for the app developer:  I cannot launch a startup package (first annual meeting at half the price), I have to use the Apple payment processor with a 30% cut, from within the app I cannot  link to the website where the customer could pay for a new annual meeting, ... For me this is far worse than treating the app developer badly.

    The argument of security is a fake argument.  For account management, app distribution and payment I have a secure cloud solution for the other platforms. I have no savings whatsoever on the iOS platform.  On the contrary I have the extra work to integrate and test the Apple Payment API, because I cannot reuse the secure payment processor API that I am using for all the other platforms.

    In this particular case, I could work around the iOS limitations and decided to cut down the features of the iOS version of the application.  On iOS people can view the agenda and vote for the topics, but they cannot create new meetings or or perform any member management.  As such I am avoiding the extra integration work and the exorbitant 30% Apple tax.   But not all app developers have this option


    This was a well thought out reply. Your are missing a big consideration by saying "Security is a fake argument". You believe your cloud solution, payment processor, website, etc to be safe and secure. This is your opinion and will not necessarily be shared by the consumer. There is a good chance that your product and company are not well know to the public in general, likely not even your target market since you stated this is a new application.

    Apple on the other hand is known by every potential customer that might use your iOS app. These customers have already made the decision to trust Apple with their payment information. I would go on to say that the overwhelming majority of iOS users put a significant value on the efforts Apple makes to keep the App Store a safe, secure and hassle free experience. Many Apple users may have even based a large portion of their device purchasing decision on this. Potential users from the iOS platform, and to a much lesser extent Mac, are distinct in this way from the other platforms you distribute on. No one expects Windows and Android to be secure. It is understood that if you install most anything downloaded you are rolling the dice, even more so if it is from a unknown, to the general public, developer/company. A truly insignificant percentage of the population uses Linux, so there is no money to be made on that platform anyway, at least for programs aimed at the average consumer. I purchase a few hundred dollars worth of apps each year and the App Store makes it an extremely low risk proposition. The fact is if not for the App Store experience these purchase simply would never be made, a great deal of iOS users feel the same way. If it makes the "Apple Tax" more bearable, you can think of it as a insurance policy iOS users expect Apple to provide to them so they can feel comfortable taking a chance on purchasing your product.

    Your are confusing security with confidence.   Apple customers are very confident that Apple pays special attention for the security of its products, and this is indeed an asset.  But that does not mean that Apple is the only company that can deliver secure solutions or that Apple has not made any security mistakes in the past. (remember the 2017 root access exploit on Mac)

    The NPO decides to buy for my product, not the individual members.  And by nature NPO's love Linux and they don't care about the device choice of their members.

    My product requires an end to end security from the member device to the cloud service where the votes are counted, irrespective of which member device is used.   The baked in security of an iOS device is nice to have but only a small step in the full security chain for such a product.

    Your completely missed the ball with the distinct nature of iOS and Mac users.
  • Reply 140 of 146
    davidw said:
    Abalos65 said:
    tehabe said:
    When it comes to distribution of applications for iOS Apple is a monopolist. You can't buy applications anywhere else.
    You can’t buy legit apps on android except from the play store.  How about amazon devices you can only get apps from the Amazon app store. Yes you can circumvent those platforms and download apps from 3rd party sites, but you put you device and your personal I formation at a huge risk. So please explains how that is monopolistic. 

    Apple supplies a platform for developers to create and distribute their apps which allows their users to download or purchase items securely. 
    chaicka said:
    Perhaps I am too simple minded to get what all these fuss is about.

    I choose Apple’s platform for what it is and how it is. If I have wanted choice of app stores or uncontrolled installation of apps which puts security and privacy at risk, I would have gone down the Android path.

    It’s that simple. And it’s the same approach I tells my family members. It’s their choice and they can jolly well support and be accountable for their own choice of platforms/devices.
    I do not get how allowing third party installs is inherently insecure. I get that it increases some small percentage of installing a malicious program, however good OS design and protection should limit the damage those can cause. I would for example say that MacOS is a secure operating system while allowing third party installs. Why would this be different for mobile operating systems?
    No OS is safe from malicious programs, if the user chooses to install the software. OSX is more secure than Windows because it is much harder to install any software, without the users knowledge. But once the user chooses to install the software, nothing is preventing malware or viruses from being installed, along with whatever the user was installing.

    This is why the users has to be careful of where they get the software they were installing from. There is a difference in how safe the software is of malicious programs when  downloading the software from torrent vs getting it from the Apple App Store (or Google Play Store). The software in the app stores are checked for malicious programs, as best as Apple and Google are able to, before they are allowed in the app stores. Just like there is a difference in security from installing software from an official retail install disc from Best Buy vs a copy of the disc from eBay or craigslist.

    Even spyware embedded in programs, have manage to get through Apple App Store security check, every so often. Just who is going to check for spyware when you download the install software from a third party site?  

    I think you are thinking about how safe the web site is, when visiting it to download software. That is not the insecure part of allowing third party downloads of software. The insecurity comes from downloading and installing software with the malicious programs embedded in the software.  No OS will stop that installation of those malicious programs, once the user chooses to install that software.  



    I am not talking about how safe a website is. When talking about OS design and protection I mean how well the OS sandboxes apps and by extension malware/viruses for example, or how well the the built-in malware/virus protection of those systems are at detecting and blocking malicious programs. Another important aspect is the permission granted to any program. Similarly to Mac, Android does have some steps that need to be performed in order to install third party apps.

    Of course doing a check for malware/viruses before anyone can download an app is a nice extra protection feature. I do however not think, as other have said, that allowing third party installs makes Android or any other operating system insecure. 
    edited March 18 gatorguy
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