European Commission grills Apple and Google on app store risks and ad practices

Posted:
in iOS

The European Commission has sent a formal request to Apple and Google asking the tech giants how they identify "systemic risks" to consumers in their respective app stores.

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European flags



Both the App Store and Google Play have been designated as "Very Large Online Platforms" (VLOPs), which requires them to comply with the Digital Services Act (DSA.) VLOPs are platforms or search engines with more than 45 million monthly users in the EU.

The EC states that it's looking specifically for information regarding how Google Play and the App Store mitigate "systemic risks relevant to their services, in particular those related to the dissemination of illegal and harmful content, any negative effects on the exercise of fundamental rights, as well as any negative effect on public security, public health, and minors."

The EC is also asking for more information regarding transparency related to "recommender systems and online advertisements."

It's not entirely clear what the European Commission is looking for specifically, as it simply defines it as "illegal and harmful content." This could be asking Google and Apple about how they assess the safety of an app before it goes live on the app store.

It's also possible that regulators are assessing how each company determines an appropriate advertisement based on the audience it thinks it will reach.

According to the European Commission's statement, Google and Apple have until January 15 to comply with the request for information. Once the information is obtained, the EC will determine whether or not it needs to formally proceedings under Article 66 of the DSA.

In October 2022, Apple came under fire for heavily promoting gambling apps in its App Store. Many users were concerned, especially when such ads were showing up next to content geared toward children and gambling addiction recovery apps.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    They should also be asking Apple to explain to them how this requirement that they allow Epic and all these other companies to set up their own third party app stores is going to make iOS a security nightmare compared to how it is now. 
    williamlondonJaiOh81
  • Reply 2 of 18
    The App Store should be encouraged so long as it is fair and equitable. Having Apple as my firewall to check software before its sold / given to me, gives me piece of mind that its safe to install and use. Without that, its a risk.
    williamlondonbyronlAppleZuluJaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 18
    Come on EU, you have more problems in your own backyard. War is coming your way go take care of that danger first…..
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 18
    The purpose of this inquiry is the same as any government or law enforcement investigation, i.e. to find something to take action on, or to maliciously misinterpret anything they find as actionable.  It's a fishing expedition, justified by nebulous, mostly unsubstantiated claims of some wrongdoing by people who can't actually create anything for themselves, so want to take what others produce.
    sdw2001JaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 18
    Did the EU assess the risks of third part App stores? These people have nothing to do in Brussels. They should focus on Russia and China risks first.
    byronlsdw2001watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 18
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,798member
    pwrmac said:
    Did the EU assess the risks of third part App stores? These people have nothing to do in Brussels. They should focus on Russia and China risks first.
    The risks are universal and Apple isn't immune from them in any shape or form. 

    This is about other problems that have been very clearly identified. 

    App Stores have obligations. 

    Users would be able to freely choose where they want to get their apps and developers can freely choose where they want to provide them.

    If you want to use the App Store exclusively, do it. 

    If you don't, then you can pick and choose. 

    If developers choose to shun the App Store then we can ask ourselves why. Depending on the answer to that question, Apple might be able to do something about it. 

    That's choice and competition. 

    If Apple doesn't like it, it has options too (supposing the regulators rule against Apple's case). 

    I'm simplyfying things a lot here but 'risks' aren't where the root problem is. 
  • Reply 7 of 18
    Would be nice if they "grilled" some users on why they might not appreciate having to provide their details to yet another entity just so they can purchase and download an app for their device, when it's worked all along so well and providing financial and personal details to yet another company who will undoubtedly be hacked, is a HUGE risk many folks don't want, just so that company can make even more money off the same transaction.

    Would be nice if they allowed users one option (Apple) instead of forcing them to be more like the competition and removing that one option..

    So much for end user choice, or protecting of the end user's personal and financial details, better to protect the profits of big behemoths than the consumer, right?!

    If you disagree, that's fine, but then Apple isn't the company for you and good news for you, there's another option in Android and its many manufacturers and many storefronts on offer. There isn't another option if you value your privacy and want your personal and financial details protected (as Apple has done successfully).

    Fuck this effort.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 18
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,020member
    Show me the company and I’ll show you the crime. That appears to be the European Commission’s motto. I would say these people are so grossly  incompetent and predictable, excepted government that is so grossly incompetent and predictable. First, there is enormous pressure to allow third-party app stores. Then they want to investigate the existing App Store for vulnerabilities that they don’t even understand.  
    edited December 2023 watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 18
    I am not a big fan of Apple app store proliferation of in-app purchases, nor the fact that the practice matured and was popularized on it. 

    Every little app these days is trying to become a "subscription" app... I do not want to pay a subscription for a simple 3d scanning app... This is ridiculous and please regulate this. The value added for a sub service should be substantial before it is allowed.


    These are things that consumer protection legislation needs to address.


    Bigger things... How about stop allowing huge multinational tech companies and startups wreck and grab entire industries worldwide??? Google took over advertisement ALL ACROSS THE GLOBE!  Fuck that...

    Now openAi/google/adobe want to take over industrial art/creative writing etc... F*^@ that!

    Airbnb is messing up the global housing market with short term rentals.. Uber is fucking over taxi companies wherever they are available, and the fare is WORSE than before with taxies.


    See the trend here? Disrupt an existing market with superior tech and ease of use... Throw tons and tons of "free" money to lure in people thinking it is cheaper and better, after market is saturated and the "old world industry" out competed, raise prices and gouge consumers. THIS is what EU and every sensible country should be regulating... And yes, that does include Apple.

    IF regulation is non existent, do you really think there is a limit to how much companies are willing to unfairly gouge customers? I highly doubt it. If history or current reality around the globe is any judge, companies (..and certain countries) do not care if people are starving or houseless due to excessive cost of living...

    This is the reason why some companies have bigger coffers than most countries. They are taking over entire industries/sectors of business across the globe... 

    edited December 2023 williamlondonmuthuk_vanalingamCheeseFreezebyronlwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 18
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 18
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    The same government you gladly see help you when you need it. You can’t have it both ways.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 12 of 18
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    The same government you gladly see help you when you need it. You can’t have it both ways.
    If you're using that logic to solve all your problems, then move to North Korea. I won't, even if North Korea offers surgery to save my life.
    byronlwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 18
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    The same government you gladly see help you when you need it. You can’t have it both ways.
    If you're using that logic to solve all your problems, then move to North Korea. I won't, even if North Korea offers surgery to save my life.
    Are you drunk?
    muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondon
  • Reply 14 of 18
    Respite said:
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    The same government you gladly see help you when you need it. You can’t have it both ways.
    If you're using that logic to solve all your problems, then move to North Korea. I won't, even if North Korea offers surgery to save my life.
    Are you drunk?
    You would go to North Korea to save your life?
  • Reply 15 of 18
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,020member
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    The same government you gladly see help you when you need it. You can’t have it both ways.
    The government doesn’t gladly help anyone. In fact, even the government trying to help ends up in disaster. The government needs to stick to the military, law-enforcement, and the judicial system, perhaps with some basic regulation thrown in. They can’t do anything else. That’s been proven for hundreds of years.  
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 18
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,020member

    ailooped said:
    I am not a big fan of Apple app store proliferation of in-app purchases, nor the fact that the practice matured and was popularized on it. 

    Every little app these days is trying to become a "subscription" app... I do not want to pay a subscription for a simple 3d scanning app... This is ridiculous and please regulate this. The value added for a sub service should be substantial before it is allowed.


    These are things that consumer protection legislation needs to address.


    Bigger things... How about stop allowing huge multinational tech companies and startups wreck and grab entire industries worldwide??? Google took over advertisement ALL ACROSS THE GLOBE!  Fuck that...

    Now openAi/google/adobe want to take over industrial art/creative writing etc... F*^@ that!

    Airbnb is messing up the global housing market with short term rentals.. Uber is fucking over taxi companies wherever they are available, and the fare is WORSE than before with taxies.


    See the trend here? Disrupt an existing market with superior tech and ease of use... Throw tons and tons of "free" money to lure in people thinking it is cheaper and better, after market is saturated and the "old world industry" out competed, raise prices and gouge consumers. THIS is what EU and every sensible country should be regulating... And yes, that does include Apple.

    IF regulation is non existent, do you really think there is a limit to how much companies are willing to unfairly gouge customers? I highly doubt it. If history or current reality around the globe is any judge, companies (..and certain countries) do not care if people are starving or houseless due to excessive cost of living...

    This is the reason why some companies have bigger coffers than most countries. They are taking over entire industries/sectors of business across the globe... 

    There is absolutely a limit. It’s called the free market. The government does nothing to help.  Every industry in which they get involved ends up being worse.
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 18
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,339member
    sdw2001 said:

    ailooped said:
    I am not a big fan of Apple app store proliferation of in-app purchases, nor the fact that the practice matured and was popularized on it. 

    Every little app these days is trying to become a "subscription" app... I do not want to pay a subscription for a simple 3d scanning app... This is ridiculous and please regulate this. The value added for a sub service should be substantial before it is allowed.


    These are things that consumer protection legislation needs to address.


    Bigger things... How about stop allowing huge multinational tech companies and startups wreck and grab entire industries worldwide??? Google took over advertisement ALL ACROSS THE GLOBE!  Fuck that...

    Now openAi/google/adobe want to take over industrial art/creative writing etc... F*^@ that!

    Airbnb is messing up the global housing market with short term rentals.. Uber is fucking over taxi companies wherever they are available, and the fare is WORSE than before with taxies.


    See the trend here? Disrupt an existing market with superior tech and ease of use... Throw tons and tons of "free" money to lure in people thinking it is cheaper and better, after market is saturated and the "old world industry" out competed, raise prices and gouge consumers. THIS is what EU and every sensible country should be regulating... And yes, that does include Apple.

    IF regulation is non existent, do you really think there is a limit to how much companies are willing to unfairly gouge customers? I highly doubt it. If history or current reality around the globe is any judge, companies (..and certain countries) do not care if people are starving or houseless due to excessive cost of living...

    This is the reason why some companies have bigger coffers than most countries. They are taking over entire industries/sectors of business across the globe... 

    There is absolutely a limit. It’s called the free market. The government does nothing to help.  Every industry in which they get involved ends up being worse.
    My 2 cents...
    If you woke up today to no governments at all, every person free to do as they deem best, no rules and no police and no borders, it would last for a day at best.

    Someone in your neighborhood would take charge of organizing, you know, for the safety and benefit of all of you.  Protect the neighborhood's assets (as they see it), because people are going to want to take your stuff with no rules to stop them. Western water wars, here we come. I'll take an ounce of gold for that gallon, thank you very much, or we can just shoot it out. Your choice. Yay, free market.

    From there it's a short trot to "government". It's fool's thinking to believe anything different. A free market cannot exist. Find me one anywhere on the planet now, or one that's existed in the last million years. If it's valuable someone will fight to control it, and then use it to control others. Nothing free about that. 

    You would truly accept an economy where Microgoople Corp has the money and power to own it all, extract any and all value for themselves, and create its own rules to live by to make it so? Oh, sounds fun and exciting. The Robber Barons ride again. 
    muthuk_vanalingamavon b7
  • Reply 18 of 18
    Respite said:
    "The government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan
    The same government you gladly see help you when you need it. You can’t have it both ways.
    If you're using that logic to solve all your problems, then move to North Korea. I won't, even if North Korea offers surgery to save my life.
    Are you drunk?
    You would go to North Korea to save your life?
    To save my life?  Yeah, probably, if it was the only option.  I don't know why that would be the case or why you're asking the question though.
    muthuk_vanalingam
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