Apple versus Epic trial ends with attorneys questioned by judge



  • Reply 21 of 23
    IreneWIreneW Posts: 302member
    danox said:
    If Apple was forced to compete for payment processing and as a result were only making as much as say Stripe was instead of 30% that would surely be a short term hit but all the additional commerce they would earn by digital content that can't be sold on iOS today would make up a good chunk of that. 
    You are living under a myth that Apple's 30% fee is a payment processing fee, which is clear because you compared Apple to Stripe which is nothing but a payment processor. On the contrary, there are billions of dollars in expenses that Apple has which Stripe doesn't have. Do you realize that? For example, Apple makes development tools that are free to obtain and use.

    Do you want Apple to start charging for all those free services when it loses its 30% exclusive fee? Here are a few examples:

    • Do you want Apple to add a $1 processing fee for every "free" app that's available on the App Store?
    • Do you want Apple to charge developers for its free tools such as Swift and xCode?
    • Do you want Apple to charge each developer for each free API that is used by any app that they develop?
    • Do you want Apple to charge end users each time their app accesses one of the currently free iCloud servers?
    • Do you want Apple to charge developers a processing each time there is an update to their app?

    All these free services, and dozens more, are funded through that 30% cut. If you want to reduce that 30% cut to 3%, then tell me where Apple will raise the prices to cover the $60 billion per year loss. Frankly, I don't mind if Apple choses to eliminate the 30% fee and start charging everywhere else.
    It is a payment processing fee for digital content.  As I've said, I'm fine with the higher commission for apps and anything else that relies on the platform like games.  And stop pretending like the App Store is being run at or close to break even making extracting 30% from both apps and digital content is somehow required for the platform to survive.  We don't know the exact number but best estimates are close to a 70% margin for the App Store so any argument that 30% is required for the App Store to thrive is nonsensical.  

    The difference between how to treat digital content and apps should be self-evident but if you don't see the difference take an example of digital content and think through what Apple says it provides for the 30% and tell me how it applies.  They don't provide discovery - individual eBook titles aren't advertised, searchable SKUs in the App Store.  Apple doesn't provide storage - unlike apps the developer handles that.  Apple doesn't provide distribution - unlike apps the developer handles that.  They don't provide the developer tools to create the digital content file.  So tell me, for an eBook, other than payment processing what specifically does that 30% cover?

    To address your questions - no, I don't think a processing fee is needed for free apps.  But a question the judge had is a good one.  Using the eBook example again - why is the provider of the eBook subsidizing billion dollar corporations like Facebook?  

    Apple does charge developers.  $99 a year.

    As for APIs and iCloud - no I don't think developers should pay for that - there is no need for Apple to double dip.  Those kinds of services are more than covered by the 30-40% margins on iOS hardware devices no different than how they are on Macs which do just fine with alternatives to using the App Store and paying 30%.

    If the end result was Apple lost the 30% on digital content and consumers getting a much better result led to their margins on the App Store going from 70% to say 40-50% why would you consider that a bad outcome?

    The actual cost per developer for all the goodies Apple provides is probably closer to 2 to 3 thousand dollars per year on the open market and not the stupidly low 99 dollars per year. All those place holder Apps within the AppStore would be gone if Apple charged the true rate.
    As someone else noted, providing these tools are part of being able to sell the devices (or the OS), not part of the app store business. The same (or better) tools are available for free for Android and Windows developers. And, they even have the luxury of chosing between different tool chains and dev environments (for free or licensed).
  • Reply 22 of 23
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,012member
    A few days ago people were lambasting the judge for asking hostile questions to Tim Cook, concluding she was an idiot. I warned people don't read too much into that. Today she asked Epic some equally hostile questions. So you see, hostile questions from a judge aren't a good indicator of which way she will rule.
    In hindsight, I agree.  I was pretty rough on her, though I did allow for the possibility it was a "dog and pony show."  She has to not only be fair, but be seen as fair.  

    If I had to guess at this point, I'd say Apple is going to win this one, possibly outright.  I could see some potential order on payment processing or payment option advertising by developers, but that comes with its own issues.  
  • Reply 23 of 23
    nadrielnadriel Posts: 92member

    Basically my reasons for believing what I believe is FREEDOM. Apple has the freedom to charge what it wants. It's not a charity. There is lots of competition. People who don't like Apple can go to Android and get all the same software there from third party app stores. Many people argue that CONSUMER FREEDOM should FORCE Apple to make all the changes that certain individuals want. That's not how freedom works. You can't use your freedom to force other people to sell you what you want at the prices you want. That's called communism.

    You have seriously misunderstood if you think that is communism, it is not. In communistic society the means of production is owned by the whole, and the output too, so no need to fix any prices. There are no communistic countries, I won’t argue if one would be even feasible but there are none. What you’re searching is the interventionist methods used in a fascist society, if you want to go with a extreme example.

    Even “free” markets have their rules against certain business practices (monopolies for example, which is the big question with big tech now). I genuinely don’t understand what you meant with consumer freedom sentence. Customers demanding company to produce what they want how they want it?
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