Japan to seek up to 20% fine for monopolistic practices by Apple

Posted:
in iOS

Japan is poised to dramatically increase the penalties for tech giants accused of monopolistic practices like Apple.

Close-up of a smartphone screen displaying app icons, including Health and App Store, with a 5G network indicator and battery icon visible.
New Japanese laws could slap Apple with up to 20% sales penalty



In an extensive global effort to limit the power of major technology companies, the Japanese government plans to revise its antitrust regulations. The strategy could lead to fines for anti-competitive activities such as unfairly restricting access to app markets, potentially increasing to 20% of pertinent sales.

Similar actions have been undertaken in other regions, including the European Union.

Japan's new proposal amplifies the current penalties, which cap 6% of sales, signaling the country's commitment to enforcing competitive practices in the digital economy. Its adjustment aligns with actions seen in other regions, including the European Union, according to Nikkei Asia.

The backdrop of Japan's regulatory shift is a series of international debates and legal challenges focusing on the business practices of major tech companies. Apple, in particular, has been at the center of these discussions.

Japan made its intentions known to impose fines on Apple in December. The purpose is to ensure that companies like Apple and Google don't favor their services or products unfairly.

Similar to the EU, the forthcoming Japanese regulations, mobile platform operators must permit alternatives to their app stores and payment systems, facilitating a more open digital market. The change is designed to dismantle the barriers favoring incumbent platforms over smaller developers and competitors.

For those who persist in anti-competitive conduct, the fines could escalate to a staggering 30% of sales. This underscores the severity of the new policy and its determination to combat continuous anti-competitive behavior.

Japan's proposal might catalyze further regulatory reforms worldwide as countries reassess their approaches to digital market monopolies. The Fair Trade Commission plans to provide a comprehensive draft of the proposal to legislative groups, including the economy and industry unit of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

The commission intends to introduce the bill to parliament within a few weeks.



Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,598member
    Apple could either
    1. leave the Japanese smartphone market entirely,
    2. remove its own app store (and everyone's app store) from the Japanese smartphone market, or 
    3. allow (or require) Android as the OS for iPhone users in the Japanese market. No more iOS on iPhones in Japan.
    I favour option three.

    magman1979
  • Reply 2 of 13
    Japan is one of the few countries in which Apple could be seen as a monopoly given the market share. It will NOT leave Japan so really it is about determining if Apple broke current laws or Apple needs to be controlled by laws yet to be written. It has become a common theme across the world where (my opinion) a vocal minority of users and developers have pushed government legislators to punish Apple for both its success and its 'dig in your heels' responses.  I think most users and many developers, did not care that much about any of this, or shrugged their shoulders at the status quo. I never needed an alternative app store or a Gameboy emulator. The average cost of an app is only 79 cents. Spotify and Epic not going to give any deals. I know how to get subscriptions using developer web sites...  But public opinion and government regulator blood (money from Apple) thirst have now escalated beyond PR containment. Could this have been averted if Apple had made changes to anti steering and app stores and commissions? I am not actually sure,  but I doubt it. But now Apple is having to react and defend and ultimately, change. But I have my doubts that iOS or Apple innovation will be better by all this.
    h2pwatto_cobrabonobob
  • Reply 3 of 13
    badmonkbadmonk Posts: 1,304member
    Agree.  I also think the American justice department did a disservice to an American corporation by uncorking this pandora box of monopoly hallucination.  And in the end hurting this large chunk of the economy.

    Every nation is now wanting a piece of the Apple.  Looks like Apple’s legal department is going to be working overtime.

    I think Apple needs to launch a large scale PR offensive to take the high ground away from government arguments.  I know Apple historically has avoided this but after the battery-gate class action, the courts don’t have the technological prowess to sort through these issues.
    edited April 15 watto_cobrarob53magman1979danoxwilliamlondon
  • Reply 4 of 13
    Apple could either
    1. leave the Japanese smartphone market entirely,
    2. remove its own app store (and everyone's app store) from the Japanese smartphone market, or 
    3. allow (or require) Android as the OS for iPhone users in the Japanese market. No more iOS on iPhones in Japan.
    Just for idle chit chat, the amusing thought crossed my mind, what if Apple just capped aggregate App Store transactions so that the per capita threshold was below the competition… oops, no more app purchases for you this year because you live in the EU and your android friends aren’t buying enough apps…
    watto_cobrah2prob53
  • Reply 5 of 13
    jdwjdw Posts: 1,370member
    Why do governments waste both time and taxpayer money on frivolous matters like this when there are far more pressing matters that require their attention?

    I've lived in Japan 30 years and have seen the stupidity first hand.  Every time they raise the consumption tax, things only get worse.  New regulations make products more expensive and less popular as a result. Tax and spend is the norm here.  There are many good things about Japan, but most of that stems from the way common people think and act, not policies by the elected leadership.

    Right now, the Japanese consumer is dealing with a super weak Yen along the lines of US$1 to ¥154, which makes things more expensive, and all companies which import (and there are many) must pay much more for their imported goods, passing that along to the consumer.  (FYI, the ideal rate is about $1 to ¥110.)  We therefore need a stronger Yen than now, not governmental intervention about silly app stores!  This is sheer madness.  It's as crazy as the government demanding companies raise salaries, when they are doing all they can do right now just to stay afloat!  Sadly, populations like Japan remain silent and just allow their government to do as they like.  This is nothing exclusive to Japan, of course.  But since I live in Japan, what goes on here matters to me.

    Leave easy targets like big tech alone and focus on the most pressing matters that affect most people. App store policies and who's a "monopoly" today don't matter a hill of beans!
    magman1979
  • Reply 6 of 13
    "Similar to the EU, the forthcoming Japanese regulations, mobile platform operators must permitalternatives to their app stores and payment systems, facilitating a more open digital market. The change is designed to dismantle the barriers favoring incumbent platforms over smaller developers and competitors."

    None of this is being done for smaller developers. They weren't the ones with the budgets for intensive lobbying. 
    magman1979williamlondon
  • Reply 7 of 13
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,257member
    jdw said:
    Why do governments waste both time and taxpayer money on frivolous matters like this when there are far more pressing matters that require their attention?

    I've lived in Japan 30 years and have seen the stupidity first hand.  Every time they raise the consumption tax, things only get worse.  New regulations make products more expensive and less popular as a result. Tax and spend is the norm here.  There are many good things about Japan, but most of that stems from the way common people think and act, not policies by the elected leadership.

    Right now, the Japanese consumer is dealing with a super weak Yen along the lines of US$1 to ¥154, which makes things more expensive, and all companies which import (and there are many) must pay much more for their imported goods, passing that along to the consumer.  (FYI, the ideal rate is about $1 to ¥110.)  We therefore need a stronger Yen than now, not governmental intervention about silly app stores!  …
    Another major issue for Japan is its total reliance on ICE vehicles. They refuse to move on, thinking they can build hydrogen cars and make a profit. Toyota owns Japan and their misguided leadership is killing Japan. If they want to try that 20% they need to realize Apple simply will charge Japan 20% more for everything, including hardware.  
  • Reply 8 of 13
    magman1979magman1979 Posts: 1,297member
    rob53 said:
    jdw said:
    Why do governments waste both time and taxpayer money on frivolous matters like this when there are far more pressing matters that require their attention?

    I've lived in Japan 30 years and have seen the stupidity first hand.  Every time they raise the consumption tax, things only get worse.  New regulations make products more expensive and less popular as a result. Tax and spend is the norm here.  There are many good things about Japan, but most of that stems from the way common people think and act, not policies by the elected leadership.

    Right now, the Japanese consumer is dealing with a super weak Yen along the lines of US$1 to ¥154, which makes things more expensive, and all companies which import (and there are many) must pay much more for their imported goods, passing that along to the consumer.  (FYI, the ideal rate is about $1 to ¥110.)  We therefore need a stronger Yen than now, not governmental intervention about silly app stores!  …
    Another major issue for Japan is its total reliance on ICE vehicles. They refuse to move on, thinking they can build hydrogen cars and make a profit. Toyota owns Japan and their misguided leadership is killing Japan. If they want to try that 20% they need to realize Apple simply will charge Japan 20% more for everything, including hardware.  
    Yeah, no... For the scam that is EV's, from their disastrous environmental raw materials footprint to carbon ROI period of ownership fraud, Toyota is the ONLY car company that actually DIDN'T drink the Cool Aid and put their foot down! I'm driving an ICE car right now and you'll have to pry it out of my cold, dead hands before I EVER give it up, and if I have to, it'll be for another ICE car from Toyota or Mazda!
    williamlondon
  • Reply 9 of 13
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,977member
    Japan won't be buying Korean or Chinese devices if given a choice and Apple will not become Dell or H.P.
    edited April 16
  • Reply 10 of 13
    nubusnubus Posts: 417member
    rob53 said:
    Another major issue for Japan is its total reliance on ICE vehicles. They refuse to move on, thinking they can build hydrogen cars and make a profit.
    Yeah, no... For the scam that is EV's, from their disastrous environmental raw materials footprint to carbon ROI period of ownership fraud, Toyota is the ONLY car company that actually DIDN'T drink the Cool Aid and put their foot down! I'm driving an ICE car right now and you'll have to pry it out of my cold, dead hands before I EVER give it up, and if I have to.
    EV is very much about national security. Japan and China don't produce oil. They rely on Russia and/or the ever so peaceful Middle East for oil. No wonder China is pushing for EVs.

    As for "EV is a scam". It is less than half the climate impact and will be reduced further as we move towards green power and batteries using other materials.
    https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/comparative-life-cycle-greenhouse-gas-emissions-of-a-mid-size-bev-and-ice-vehicle

    And could we please stop these "Apple shouldn't sell to regions with pending antitrust investigations". US, UK, EU, Japan, Australia, Brazil, India,... Apple is fighting across the globe. 
    sphericgatorguy
  • Reply 11 of 13
    sphericspheric Posts: 2,577member
    Apple could either
    1. leave the Japanese smartphone market entirely,
    2. remove its own app store (and everyone's app store) from the Japanese smartphone market, or 
    3. allow (or require) Android as the OS for iPhone users in the Japanese market. No more iOS on iPhones in Japan.
    I favour option three.

    4.  follow the law. 

    💁‍♂️
    muthuk_vanalingamgatorguy
  • Reply 12 of 13
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,977member
    Apple could either
    1. leave the Japanese smartphone market entirely,
    2. remove its own app store (and everyone's app store) from the Japanese smartphone market, or 
    3. allow (or require) Android as the OS for iPhone users in the Japanese market. No more iOS on iPhones in Japan.
    I favour option three.

    Apple won't be leaving Japan Sony and Nintendo will slap the Japanese government into shape because they are going to need Apple to fend off game emulator apps across the world on Apple stores. The Japanese government will get a wakeup call.
  • Reply 13 of 13
    Apple could either
    1. leave the Japanese smartphone market entirely,
    2. remove its own app store (and everyone's app store) from the Japanese smartphone market, or 
    3. allow (or require) Android as the OS for iPhone users in the Japanese market. No more iOS on iPhones in Japan.
    I favour option three.

    As with any business. They can either follow the local law and regulations or pay the price for not following the law of the land. Apple is not Donald Trump and can weasel out of most of his misdeeds for decades.
    sphericmuthuk_vanalingam
Sign In or Register to comment.