Apple responds to Spotify complaints over App store

Alfred Osborne
March 19, 2019

By now you'll hopefully have seen our alert this morning about Apple's response to Spotify's anti-trust complaint about its App Store policies.

He said that if Spotify chooses not to use Apple's payment system, to avoid paying the commission, the company applies "a series of technical and experience-limiting restrictions" on consumers running its streaming service on the rival tech company's devices.

It said this included taking a cut when Spotify users who chose to upgrade from the free version of the service to the pay monthly premium version and this led to the firm gaining an unfair advantage because it has its own streaming service - Apple Music. It has created negative implications for the two companies and even harmed listeners as these tech giants continue to battle against each other.

Apple took the unusual step of replying via a public statement clarifying how the App store worked and the fees it charged.

In a statement issued to Variety, Spotify responded to Apple's comments by saying "every monopolist will suggest they have done nothing wrong" and that Spotify users on iOS are "Apple customers and not Spotify customers".

Apple responded to the complaint to the European Union commission with a strongly worded blog post, which according to a report in Variety, Spotify felt was "entirely in line with our expectations".

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Apple also noted that Spotify's issue with the way it taxes apps is part of a "misleading rhetoric", explaining that 84% of the apps in the App Store pay the company nothing when users download the app.

Spotify asked readers to refer to its website for details and said: "We respect the process the European Commission must now undertake to conduct its review".

"Without Apple companies like Spotify would not have much of a business". Apple has introduced rules to the app store that limit choices and stifle the growth of other interested companies for the sole benefit of the app store's revenue.

"After using the App Store for years to dramatically grow their business, Spotify seeks to keep all the benefits of the App Store ecosystem - including the substantial revenue that they draw from the App Store´s customers - without making any contributions to that marketplace", it added. Spotify released a statement of its own saying that it highly supports the royalty increase, taking into account and consideration things like the cost of the video and lyric rights.

That rate drops to 15 per cent for subscriptions of more than a year.

"We want more app businesses to thrive - including the ones that compete with some aspect of our business - because they drive us to be better", Apple said.

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