Apple’s Services Segment Sees Double-Digit Growth in Q3 2020

Apple’s services category, which includes iTunes, the App Store, Mac App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, AppleCare, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, and more, continues to see major growth each quarter.


According to today’s earnings report covering the third fiscal quarter of 2020, Apple’s services segment brought in $13.2 billion, up nearly $2 billion from the $11.5 billion earned in the third quarter of 2019, marking a June quarter record.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said that Apple’s record third quarter earnings of $59.8 billion were driven by double-digit growth in products and services.The ‌App Store‌, ‌Apple Music‌, and video and cloud services saw record revenue, though revenue from ‌AppleCare‌ and ads was down.

According to Cook Apple has successfully achieved its 2016 goal of doubling its services revenue, hitting the milestone six months ahead of expectations.

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Apple's services category, which includes iTunes, the App Store, Mac App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, AppleCare, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, and more, continues to see major growth each quarter.


According to today's earnings report covering the third fiscal quarter of 2020, Apple's services segment brought in $13.2 billion, up nearly $2 billion from the $11.5 billion earned in the third quarter of 2019, marking a June quarter record.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said that Apple's record third quarter earnings of $59.8 billion were driven by double-digit growth in products and services.The ‌App Store‌, ‌Apple Music‌, and video and cloud services saw record revenue, though revenue from ‌AppleCare‌ and ads was down.

According to Cook Apple has successfully achieved its 2016 goal of doubling its services revenue, hitting the milestone six months ahead of expectations.
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Apple Offered to Halve App Store Fee to Get Amazon Prime Video on iOS and Apple TV

Apple offered Amazon lower App Store fees to convince it to launch its Prime Video app on the ‌App Store‌ and Apple TV, documents published by the U.S. antitrust subcommittee have revealed.

According to email correspondence between Apple’s services chief Eddy Cue and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Apple struck a deal to bring Amazon Prime Video into the ‌App Store‌ by agreeing to take a 15% revenue share of subscriptions signed-up through the app. Apple usually takes a 30% share of all ‌App Store‌ subscription revenue, dropping to 15% only if the subscription continues for a second year.

Image credit: Mark Gurman

In 2016, when the meeting took place, Amazon Prime Video wasn’t available on ‌Apple TV‌, which competes directly with Amazon’s Fire TV. At the time, Bezos admitted that Amazon was holding out for “acceptable business terms” from Apple to include its service on Apple’s set-top box. It’s unclear if the reduced subscriptions cut was part of the final terms of the agreement.

According to the email, Apple also agreed to take a 15% share of third-party Amazon Channels sold through the app if the subscriber used Apple payment processing, agreed to support integration with Siri and pipe in Prime Video content to its TV app for iOS, and agreed to include Prime Video results in ‌Siri‌ and Spotlight searches. A year after the email was sent, Amazon Prime Video launched on ‌Apple TV‌.

Other documents shared by the committee also reveal correspondence between Apple and Amazon regarding the 2018 deal for Apple to officially sell devices on Amazon’s website. Bloomberg notes that the documents show Amazon expected to bring in $3.2 billion from the deal in the first year, including $1.1 billion from iPhone sales.

The reduced ‌App Store‌ fees for Amazon’s Prime Video app are actually part of a longstanding policy run by Apple to provide better fees for subscription-based streaming video apps.

However, the antitrust subcommittee interpreted the deal as representing preferential treatment given to Amazon and that Apple was not treating its developers equally when it came to providing access to its ‌App Store‌ and other platforms. “That is not correct,” Cook said on Wednesday when asked by the subcommittee if some developers are treated differently. “We treat every developer the same.”

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Apple offered Amazon lower App Store fees to convince it to launch its Prime Video app on the ‌App Store‌ and Apple TV, documents published by the U.S. antitrust subcommittee have revealed.

According to email correspondence between Apple's services chief Eddy Cue and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Apple struck a deal to bring Amazon Prime Video into the ‌App Store‌ by agreeing to take a 15% revenue share of subscriptions signed-up through the app. Apple usually takes a 30% share of all ‌App Store‌ subscription revenue, dropping to 15% only if the subscription continues for a second year.

Image credit: Mark Gurman

In 2016, when the meeting took place, Amazon Prime Video wasn't available on ‌Apple TV‌, which competes directly with Amazon's Fire TV. At the time, Bezos admitted that Amazon was holding out for "acceptable business terms" from Apple to include its service on Apple's set-top box. It's unclear if the reduced subscriptions cut was part of the final terms of the agreement.

According to the email, Apple also agreed to take a 15% share of third-party Amazon Channels sold through the app if the subscriber used Apple payment processing, agreed to support integration with Siri and pipe in Prime Video content to its TV app for iOS, and agreed to include Prime Video results in ‌Siri‌ and Spotlight searches. A year after the email was sent, Amazon Prime Video launched on ‌Apple TV‌.

Other documents shared by the committee also reveal correspondence between Apple and Amazon regarding the 2018 deal for Apple to officially sell devices on Amazon's website. Bloomberg notes that the documents show Amazon expected to bring in $3.2 billion from the deal in the first year, including $1.1 billion from iPhone sales.

The reduced ‌App Store‌ fees for Amazon's Prime Video app are actually part of a longstanding policy run by Apple to provide better fees for subscription-based streaming video apps.

However, the antitrust subcommittee interpreted the deal as representing preferential treatment given to Amazon and that Apple was not treating its developers equally when it came to providing access to its ‌App Store‌ and other platforms. "That is not correct," Cook said on Wednesday when asked by the subcommittee if some developers are treated differently. "We treat every developer the same."
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Apple in 2011 Considered Collecting a 40% Fee From Some Subscription Apps

Apple once considered taking a 40 percent cut from some subscription apps, according to documents shared today by the House Judiciary Committee (via Bloomberg).


Back in March 2011, Apple’s services boss Eddy Cue emailed three other executives and suggested Apple should “ask for 40% for the first year only,” but that a “few deals” needed to be worked out for Apple to “see what is right.”

One of the executives, Jai Chulani, wrote back that Apple could be “leaving money on the table” asking for 30 percent in the first year of subscriptions.

At the time, the emails referred to apps that offered digital content like Hulu on the Apple TV rather than apps running on iPhone and iPad, though Apple had launched App Store subscriptions in February 2011.

Apple ultimately decided to take a 30 percent cut from subscriptions purchased through the ‌App Store‌, and later reduced that rate for longer running subscriptions. Today, when customers sign up for a subscription within an app, Apple collects 30 percent for the first year, and 15 percent for the second year and all subsequent years.

Apple CEO Tim Cook during his testimony at today’s antitrust subcommittee meeting emphasized that Apple has not changed its ‌App Store‌ fees since the ‌App Store‌ launched, and has in fact lowered them, referencing the 15 percent cut.

Ahead of the antitrust meeting, Apple also commissioned a study suggesting Apple’s ‌App Store‌ fees are in line with the fees collected by other digital marketplaces and service providers.

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Apple once considered taking a 40 percent cut from some subscription apps, according to documents shared today by the House Judiciary Committee (via Bloomberg).


Back in March 2011, Apple's services boss Eddy Cue emailed three other executives and suggested Apple should "ask for 40% for the first year only," but that a "few deals" needed to be worked out for Apple to "see what is right."

One of the executives, Jai Chulani, wrote back that Apple could be "leaving money on the table" asking for 30 percent in the first year of subscriptions.

At the time, the emails referred to apps that offered digital content like Hulu on the Apple TV rather than apps running on iPhone and iPad, though Apple had launched App Store subscriptions in February 2011.

Apple ultimately decided to take a 30 percent cut from subscriptions purchased through the ‌App Store‌, and later reduced that rate for longer running subscriptions. Today, when customers sign up for a subscription within an app, Apple collects 30 percent for the first year, and 15 percent for the second year and all subsequent years.

Apple CEO Tim Cook during his testimony at today's antitrust subcommittee meeting emphasized that Apple has not changed its ‌App Store‌ fees since the ‌App Store‌ launched, and has in fact lowered them, referencing the 15 percent cut.

Ahead of the antitrust meeting, Apple also commissioned a study suggesting Apple's ‌App Store‌ fees are in line with the fees collected by other digital marketplaces and service providers.
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Apple CEO Tim Cook Comments on ‘Hey’ App Controversy and Apple’s App Store Policies

Apple CEO Tim Cook was, as expected, questioned about Apple’s App Store policies during today’s antitrust hearing with the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee. Cook primarily stuck to the talking points provided in his opening statement [PDF], but he did have some extra color to add.


Cook was specifically questioned about email app “Hey” from Basecamp, which was at the center of a huge controversy earlier this year after Apple approved the app and then threatened to remove it from the ‌App Store‌ because Hey was skirting Apple’s in-app purchase rules.

At issue was the fact that the “Hey” app was non-functional for customers unless they subscribed to the $99 per year Hey email service outside of the ‌App Store‌. Hey did not want to give Apple a 30 percent cut of profits, while Apple claimed that it did not want an app that “doesn’t work” on the ‌App Store‌. Hey at the time opened to a blank screen asking users to log in.

When asked about the inconsistency over the approval of the app and the subsequent controversy, Cook didn’t have much to say other than pointing out that the issue was resolved and that the ‌App Store‌ provides a lot of value for developers.

Hey is in the ‌App Store‌ today and we’re happy that they’re there. I believe they have a version of their product for free so they’re not paying anything on that. I would also say that the 15 or 30 percent is for lots of different services, compilers, programming languages, APIs, etc. […]

It’s an economic miracle that the ‌App Store‌ allows a person in their basement to start a company and serve 170 countries in the world. I believe it’s the highest job creator in the last decade.

Cook went on to explain that Apple does sometimes make mistakes given the volume of apps that are examined each week. “I’m sure we made errors,” said Cook. “We get 100,000 apps submitted a week and there are 1.7 million apps in the ‌App Store‌.”

Cook was asked if Apple’s 15 to 30 percent cut that it takes from apps squeezes out the next generation of App makers and whether it’s unjust, and Cook said no.

No, I don’t think so. There are a lot of apps on the store and a lot of people are making a very good living.

There were questions on whether Apple was “extracting” commissions from apps that have had to change their business models in response to the pandemic like Airbnb and ClassPass, (as outlined here) and whether this was pandemic profiteering.

Cook said Apple would “never do that.” He went on to explain that if something has moved to a digital service that does not follow the ‌App Store‌ rules, that it does need to go through the ‌App Store‌. “In the cases I’m aware of, we’re working with the developers,” he said.

As for educational apps, Cook said that Apple will not make efforts to monetize apps that students adopt as they transition to learning digitally.

We’re proud of what we’ve done in education. We’re serving that market in a significant way. We will work with people who move from a physical to virtual world because of the pandemic.

When asked about limiting copy cat apps and whether those rules apply to Apple, Cook said that he was not familiar with what was being asked, but Apple is subjected to the same rules as other app developers. The Congressman questioning him, Joe Neguse, said that Apple’s ‌App Store‌ rules allow Apple to use any data collected by developers to create clone apps while also preventing these kind of apps from developers.

Cook said that he was not familiar with that, and that he’d follow up with the Congressman’s office. He did, however, say that Apple would “never steal somebody’s IP.”

Cook’s full testimony can be watched on YouTube as the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee livestreamed the proceedings.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook was, as expected, questioned about Apple's App Store policies during today's antitrust hearing with the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee. Cook primarily stuck to the talking points provided in his opening statement [PDF], but he did have some extra color to add.


Cook was specifically questioned about email app "Hey" from Basecamp, which was at the center of a huge controversy earlier this year after Apple approved the app and then threatened to remove it from the ‌App Store‌ because Hey was skirting Apple's in-app purchase rules.

At issue was the fact that the "Hey" app was non-functional for customers unless they subscribed to the $99 per year Hey email service outside of the ‌App Store‌. Hey did not want to give Apple a 30 percent cut of profits, while Apple claimed that it did not want an app that "doesn't work" on the ‌App Store‌. Hey at the time opened to a blank screen asking users to log in.

When asked about the inconsistency over the approval of the app and the subsequent controversy, Cook didn't have much to say other than pointing out that the issue was resolved and that the ‌App Store‌ provides a lot of value for developers.
Hey is in the ‌App Store‌ today and we're happy that they're there. I believe they have a version of their product for free so they're not paying anything on that. I would also say that the 15 or 30 percent is for lots of different services, compilers, programming languages, APIs, etc. [...]

It's an economic miracle that the ‌App Store‌ allows a person in their basement to start a company and serve 170 countries in the world. I believe it's the highest job creator in the last decade.
Cook went on to explain that Apple does sometimes make mistakes given the volume of apps that are examined each week. "I'm sure we made errors," said Cook. "We get 100,000 apps submitted a week and there are 1.7 million apps in the ‌App Store‌."

Cook was asked if Apple's 15 to 30 percent cut that it takes from apps squeezes out the next generation of App makers and whether it's unjust, and Cook said no.
No, I don't think so. There are a lot of apps on the store and a lot of people are making a very good living.
There were questions on whether Apple was "extracting" commissions from apps that have had to change their business models in response to the pandemic like Airbnb and ClassPass, (as outlined here) and whether this was pandemic profiteering.

Cook said Apple would "never do that." He went on to explain that if something has moved to a digital service that does not follow the ‌App Store‌ rules, that it does need to go through the ‌App Store‌. "In the cases I'm aware of, we're working with the developers," he said.

As for educational apps, Cook said that Apple will not make efforts to monetize apps that students adopt as they transition to learning digitally.
We're proud of what we've done in education. We're serving that market in a significant way. We will work with people who move from a physical to virtual world because of the pandemic.
When asked about limiting copy cat apps and whether those rules apply to Apple, Cook said that he was not familiar with what was being asked, but Apple is subjected to the same rules as other app developers. The Congressman questioning him, Joe Neguse, said that Apple's ‌App Store‌ rules allow Apple to use any data collected by developers to create clone apps while also preventing these kind of apps from developers.

Cook said that he was not familiar with that, and that he'd follow up with the Congressman's office. He did, however, say that Apple would "never steal somebody's IP."

Cook's full testimony can be watched on YouTube as the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee livestreamed the proceedings.
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Tim Cook Questioned on Apple’s 2019 Ban on Parental Control Apps Using Mobile Device Management

Apple in early 2019 removed or restricted many popular screen time and parental control apps on the App Store due to their use of Mobile Device Management, or MDM, which the company said put user security and privacy at risk.


During today’s antitrust hearing with the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, Cook was questioned about Apple’s decision to remove the parental control apps, which came after the release of Apple’s own Screen Time feature.

Cook said what Apple has said multiple times before, that the apps that used Mobile Device Management to allow parents to limit kids access to their devices placed data at risk. “We were worried about the safety of kids,” Cook said.

Cook’s statement was similar to what Apple said when the apps were removed: “These apps were using an enterprise technology that provided them access to kids’ highly sensitive personal data. We do not think it is O.K. for any apps to help data companies track or optimize advertising of kids.”

The Congresswoman questioning Cook asked about a specific app from the Saudi Arabian government that also used MDM, but Cook said he was not familiar with the app and that he would have to provide more data at a later date. When questioned about whether Apple applies different rules to different app developers, Cook once again said that rules are applied to all developers equally.

Cook was asked about the timing of the removal of the parental control apps, given that Screen Time had launched not too long before, a question that Cook largely skirted. He was asked why Phil Schiller had referred customers complaining about the removal of parental control apps to Screen Time, but Cook referenced the more than 30 parental control apps in the ‌App Store‌ and said there is “vibrant competition” in the parental control space in the ‌App Store‌.

When pressed on whether Apple has the power to exclude apps from the ‌App Store‌ or remove competing apps, Cook returned to what he said during his opening statement, that there’s a “wide gate” for the ‌App Store‌, referring to the fact that there are more than 1.7 million apps available. “It’s an economic miracle,” said Cook. “We want to get every app we can on the ‌App Store‌.”

In tandem with the questioning on parental control apps, Cook was asked why, in 2010, Apple used the ‌App Store‌ to push publisher Random House into participating in the iBookstore, which Random House had declined to do. In a cited document, Apple iTunes chief Eddy Cue at the time emailed Steve Jobs that he “prevented an app from Random House from going live in the ‌App Store‌,” because Apple was aiming to get Random House to agree to an overall deal. Cook in response said there are “many reasons” an app might not make it through the approval process. “It might not work properly,” he said.

One of the documents shared by the subcommittee

Apple’s 2019 decision to limit parental control apps led the developers of those apps to call for a public API that would allow them to access the same features that are available in Screen Time after the MDM options were restricted, which Apple declined to provide.

Mobile Device Management, which the apps used, is a feature that is specifically designed for enterprise users to manage company-owned devices. Apple’s position is that the use of MDM by consumer-focused apps has privacy and security concerns that have been referenced in ‌App Store‌ guidelines since 2017.

Rather than providing an API, Apple ultimately decided to allow parental control app developers to use Mobile Device Management for their apps, with stricter privacy controls that prevent them from selling, using, or disclosing data to third parties.

This article, “Tim Cook Questioned on Apple’s 2019 Ban on Parental Control Apps Using Mobile Device Management” first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Apple in early 2019 removed or restricted many popular screen time and parental control apps on the App Store due to their use of Mobile Device Management, or MDM, which the company said put user security and privacy at risk.


During today's antitrust hearing with the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, Cook was questioned about Apple's decision to remove the parental control apps, which came after the release of Apple's own Screen Time feature.

Cook said what Apple has said multiple times before, that the apps that used Mobile Device Management to allow parents to limit kids access to their devices placed data at risk. "We were worried about the safety of kids," Cook said.

Cook's statement was similar to what Apple said when the apps were removed: "These apps were using an enterprise technology that provided them access to kids' highly sensitive personal data. We do not think it is O.K. for any apps to help data companies track or optimize advertising of kids."

The Congresswoman questioning Cook asked about a specific app from the Saudi Arabian government that also used MDM, but Cook said he was not familiar with the app and that he would have to provide more data at a later date. When questioned about whether Apple applies different rules to different app developers, Cook once again said that rules are applied to all developers equally.

Cook was asked about the timing of the removal of the parental control apps, given that Screen Time had launched not too long before, a question that Cook largely skirted. He was asked why Phil Schiller had referred customers complaining about the removal of parental control apps to Screen Time, but Cook referenced the more than 30 parental control apps in the ‌App Store‌ and said there is "vibrant competition" in the parental control space in the ‌App Store‌.

When pressed on whether Apple has the power to exclude apps from the ‌App Store‌ or remove competing apps, Cook returned to what he said during his opening statement, that there's a "wide gate" for the ‌App Store‌, referring to the fact that there are more than 1.7 million apps available. "It's an economic miracle," said Cook. "We want to get every app we can on the ‌App Store‌."

In tandem with the questioning on parental control apps, Cook was asked why, in 2010, Apple used the ‌App Store‌ to push publisher Random House into participating in the iBookstore, which Random House had declined to do. In a cited document, Apple iTunes chief Eddy Cue at the time emailed Steve Jobs that he "prevented an app from Random House from going live in the ‌App Store‌," because Apple was aiming to get Random House to agree to an overall deal. Cook in response said there are "many reasons" an app might not make it through the approval process. "It might not work properly," he said.

One of the documents shared by the subcommittee

Apple's 2019 decision to limit parental control apps led the developers of those apps to call for a public API that would allow them to access the same features that are available in Screen Time after the MDM options were restricted, which Apple declined to provide.

Mobile Device Management, which the apps used, is a feature that is specifically designed for enterprise users to manage company-owned devices. Apple's position is that the use of MDM by consumer-focused apps has privacy and security concerns that have been referenced in ‌App Store‌ guidelines since 2017.

Rather than providing an API, Apple ultimately decided to allow parental control app developers to use Mobile Device Management for their apps, with stricter privacy controls that prevent them from selling, using, or disclosing data to third parties.
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Apple CEO Tim Cook Likens Competition for Attracting Developers to a ‘Street Fight for Market Share’ in Smartphone Business

Apple CEO Tim Cook is today testifying in an antitrust hearing with the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, where he was questioned about Apple’s App Store policies.


Cook was hit with complaints from developers that the committee has spoken to. Apple was accused of making its ‌App Store‌ rules unavailable to developers, arbitrarily enforcing those rules, changing them at will, enforcing rules that benefit Apple, and discriminating between smaller and larger app developers.

In response, Cook claimed that Apple treats all developers the same, with open and transparent rules. “We care deeply about privacy and quality. We look at every app, but the rules apply evenly to everyone.” Cook said that some developers are not favored over others and that Apple examines all apps, small or large.

Cook was questioned about reduced commission rates for apps like Amazon Prime, which Cook said are available to “anyone meeting the conditions.” The Congressman questioning Cook went on to ask whether Apple uses data collected from the ‌App Store‌ to decide whether it would be profitable for Apple to develop a competing app, a question that Cook skirted.

Cook was then asked what was stopping Apple from potentially raising its ‌App Store‌ commissions and fees, something that Apple has never done. Cook said that there’s competition to attract developers just like there’s competition to attract customers, likening the battle for developers to a “street fight for marketshare.”

There’s competition for developers just like there’s a competition for customers. And so competition for developers, they can write their apps for Android, or Windows, or Xbox, or PlayStation. We have fierce competition at the developer side and the customer side. Essentially, it’s so competitive I’d describe it as a street fight for market share in the smartphone business.

Cook also said that Apple does not retaliate or bully app developers who do not agree to Apple’s ‌App Store‌ rules. “It’s strongly against company culture,” said Cook.

The antitrust hearing is ongoing, and can be watched live over on YouTube. The antitrust subcommittee is also questioning Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google/Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Most of the questions so far have been for Pichai and Zuckerberg, but we’ll share additional details on anything else notable Cook has to say.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook is today testifying in an antitrust hearing with the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, where he was questioned about Apple's App Store policies.


Cook was hit with complaints from developers that the committee has spoken to. Apple was accused of making its ‌App Store‌ rules unavailable to developers, arbitrarily enforcing those rules, changing them at will, enforcing rules that benefit Apple, and discriminating between smaller and larger app developers.

In response, Cook claimed that Apple treats all developers the same, with open and transparent rules. "We care deeply about privacy and quality. We look at every app, but the rules apply evenly to everyone." Cook said that some developers are not favored over others and that Apple examines all apps, small or large.

Cook was questioned about reduced commission rates for apps like Amazon Prime, which Cook said are available to "anyone meeting the conditions." The Congressman questioning Cook went on to ask whether Apple uses data collected from the ‌App Store‌ to decide whether it would be profitable for Apple to develop a competing app, a question that Cook skirted.

Cook was then asked what was stopping Apple from potentially raising its ‌App Store‌ commissions and fees, something that Apple has never done. Cook said that there's competition to attract developers just like there's competition to attract customers, likening the battle for developers to a "street fight for marketshare."
There's competition for developers just like there's a competition for customers. And so competition for developers, they can write their apps for Android, or Windows, or Xbox, or PlayStation. We have fierce competition at the developer side and the customer side. Essentially, it's so competitive I'd describe it as a street fight for market share in the smartphone business.
Cook also said that Apple does not retaliate or bully app developers who do not agree to Apple's ‌App Store‌ rules. "It's strongly against company culture," said Cook.

The antitrust hearing is ongoing, and can be watched live over on YouTube. The antitrust subcommittee is also questioning Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google/Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Most of the questions so far have been for Pichai and Zuckerberg, but we'll share additional details on anything else notable Cook has to say.
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Apple CEO Tim Cook: ‘We Want to Get Every App We Can on the Store, Not Keep Them Off’

As Apple CEO Tim Cook prepares to testify in front of the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee tomorrow, Bloomberg has shared details on Cook’s opening statement.


Cook will say that Apple does “not have a dominant market share” in any market where it does not do business, and that consumers have many other choices when it comes to smartphones. “As much as we believe the iPhone provides the best user experience, we know it is far from the only choice available to consumers,” reads Cook’s testimony.

Cook will “make no concession on the facts” and plans to dispute claims that Apple is anti-competitive. Apple’s App Store, Cook says has opened the “gate wider” for developers.

“After beginning with 500 apps, today the ‌App Store‌ hosts more than 1.7 million – only 60 of which are Apple software,” Cook says. “Clearly, if Apple is a gatekeeper, what we have done is open the gate wider. We want to get every app we can on the store, not keep them off.”

As for high ‌App Store‌ commissions, Cook will argue that Apple’s 15 to 30 percent cut is competitive with alternatives, and that Apple offers a better option than what was available for software developers prior to when the ‌App Store‌ launched in 2008.

Cook plans to explain that Apple has not raised commissions or added fees since the ‌App Store‌ debuted, and has, in fact, reduced fees for subscriptions and added exemptions for certain app categories. “The ‌App Store‌ evolves with the times and every change we have made has been in the direction of providing a better experience for our users and a compelling business opportunity for developers,” reads Cook’s statement.

The antitrust hearing will kick off tomorrow at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, with a live stream to be provided. It will also feature testimony from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, and Google/Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai. Bloomberg‘s full article has additional details on Cook’s planned talking points.

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As Apple CEO Tim Cook prepares to testify in front of the U.S. House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee tomorrow, Bloomberg has shared details on Cook's opening statement.


Cook will say that Apple does "not have a dominant market share" in any market where it does not do business, and that consumers have many other choices when it comes to smartphones. "As much as we believe the iPhone provides the best user experience, we know it is far from the only choice available to consumers," reads Cook's testimony.

Cook will "make no concession on the facts" and plans to dispute claims that Apple is anti-competitive. Apple's App Store, Cook says has opened the "gate wider" for developers.
"After beginning with 500 apps, today the ‌App Store‌ hosts more than 1.7 million - only 60 of which are Apple software," Cook says. "Clearly, if Apple is a gatekeeper, what we have done is open the gate wider. We want to get every app we can on the store, not keep them off."
As for high ‌App Store‌ commissions, Cook will argue that Apple's 15 to 30 percent cut is competitive with alternatives, and that Apple offers a better option than what was available for software developers prior to when the ‌App Store‌ launched in 2008.

Cook plans to explain that Apple has not raised commissions or added fees since the ‌App Store‌ debuted, and has, in fact, reduced fees for subscriptions and added exemptions for certain app categories. "The ‌App Store‌ evolves with the times and every change we have made has been in the direction of providing a better experience for our users and a compelling business opportunity for developers," reads Cook's statement.

The antitrust hearing will kick off tomorrow at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, with a live stream to be provided. It will also feature testimony from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, and Google/Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai. Bloomberg's full article has additional details on Cook's planned talking points.
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Phil Schiller: App Store Levels Playing Field and Supports Developers

Ahead of Apple CEO Tim Cook’s testimony before U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday at an antitrust hearing, senior vice president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller has defended App Store policies, in an interview with Reuters.

Schiller explained that the ‌App Store‌ was initially viewed at Apple as an experiment in offering “compellingly low commission” to attract developers. Small developers would otherwise face struggling to sell software into physical stores at the time.

“One of the things we came up with is, we’re going to treat all apps in the ‌App Store‌ the same – one set of rules for everybody, no special deals, no special terms, no special code, everything applies to all developers the same. That was not the case in PC software. Nobody thought like that. It was a complete flip around of how the whole system was going to work,” Schiller said.

He asserted that the review process and ‌App Store‌ rules were necessary since apps are purchased by customers through Apple’s own billing system. According to Schiller, when launching the ‌App Store‌, Apple executives believed users would feel more confident purchasing apps if they felt their payment was secure and via a trustworthy vendor. “We think our customers’ privacy is protected that way. Imagine if you had to enter credit cards and payments to every app you’ve ever used,” he said.

Apple has been known to make exceptions to its own ‌App Store‌ rules, such as in 2018 with Microsoft, to allow users to log into Minecraft accounts that were purchased externally.

“As we were talking to some of the biggest game developers, for example, Minecraft, they said, ‘I totally get why you want the user to be able to pay for it on device. But we have a lot of users coming who bought their subscription or their account somewhere else – on an Xbox, on a PC, on the web. And it’s a big barrier to getting onto your store,'” Schiller said. “So we created this exception to our own rule.”

Apple’s 30 percent commission on sales via the ‌App Store‌ has been criticized by developers. Airbnb and ClassPass have, for example, recently claimed that Apple’s demand to take a cut of all online sales through their apps was wrong. Schiller argued that Apple’s commission helps to fund an extensive system for developers and that thousands of Apple engineers maintain secure servers to deliver apps and develop the tools to create and test them.

Apple has come under fire for its ‌App Store‌ rules and rate of commission, and there is increasing concern that Apple and Google have now established a “duopoly” on mobile app stores. Apple’s ‌App Store‌ policies and commission on in-app purchases have now become part of the ongoing inquiry by U.S. antitrust regulators, and a similar investigation has begun in the EU.

This article, “Phil Schiller: App Store Levels Playing Field and Supports Developers” first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Ahead of Apple CEO Tim Cook's testimony before U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday at an antitrust hearing, senior vice president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller has defended App Store policies, in an interview with Reuters.



Schiller explained that the ‌App Store‌ was initially viewed at Apple as an experiment in offering "compellingly low commission" to attract developers. Small developers would otherwise face struggling to sell software into physical stores at the time.

"One of the things we came up with is, we're going to treat all apps in the ‌App Store‌ the same - one set of rules for everybody, no special deals, no special terms, no special code, everything applies to all developers the same. That was not the case in PC software. Nobody thought like that. It was a complete flip around of how the whole system was going to work," Schiller said.


He asserted that the review process and ‌App Store‌ rules were necessary since apps are purchased by customers through Apple's own billing system. According to Schiller, when launching the ‌App Store‌, Apple executives believed users would feel more confident purchasing apps if they felt their payment was secure and via a trustworthy vendor. "We think our customers' privacy is protected that way. Imagine if you had to enter credit cards and payments to every app you've ever used," he said.

Apple has been known to make exceptions to its own ‌App Store‌ rules, such as in 2018 with Microsoft, to allow users to log into Minecraft accounts that were purchased externally.

"As we were talking to some of the biggest game developers, for example, Minecraft, they said, 'I totally get why you want the user to be able to pay for it on device. But we have a lot of users coming who bought their subscription or their account somewhere else - on an Xbox, on a PC, on the web. And it's a big barrier to getting onto your store,'" Schiller said. "So we created this exception to our own rule."


Apple's 30 percent commission on sales via the ‌App Store‌ has been criticized by developers. Airbnb and ClassPass have, for example, recently claimed that Apple's demand to take a cut of all online sales through their apps was wrong. Schiller argued that Apple's commission helps to fund an extensive system for developers and that thousands of Apple engineers maintain secure servers to deliver apps and develop the tools to create and test them.

Apple has come under fire for its ‌App Store‌ rules and rate of commission, and there is increasing concern that Apple and Google have now established a "duopoly" on mobile app stores. Apple's ‌App Store‌ policies and commission on in-app purchases have now become part of the ongoing inquiry by U.S. antitrust regulators, and a similar investigation has begun in the EU.
This article, "Phil Schiller: App Store Levels Playing Field and Supports Developers" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Microsoft President Met With U.S. Antitrust Committee Investigating Apple and Expressed Concerns Over App Store

Apple CEO Tim Cook, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Alphabet/Google CEO Sundar Pichai, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg are all set to participate in an antitrust hearing next Monday held by the United States House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee as part of an ongoing antitrust investigation on competition in digital markets.


Ahead of the hearing, the committee spoke with Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith, with The Information sharing details on the virtual meeting.

The committee wanted to talk with Smith so he could “provide Microsoft’s perspective as a big tech company” formerly involved in antitrust regulation over Windows, but Smith also reportedly shared Microsoft’s concerns with the way Apple operates the App Store.

Topics covered included Apple’s arbitrary ‌App Store‌ approval processes, the 30 percent cut that Apple takes from app purchases and subscriptions, and requirements that developers use Apple’s in-app purchase system.

At a Politico event in June, Smith expressed similar sentiments and said that it’s time for regulators to take a look at app stores and the payment requirements.

“They impose requirements that increasingly say there is only one way to get on to our platform and that is to go through the gate that we ourselves have created. In some cases they create a very high price per toll – in some cases 30% of your revenue has to go to the toll keeper.”

“The time has come – whether we are talking about D.C. or Brussels – for a much more focused conversation about the nature of app stores, the rules that are being put in place, the prices and the tolls that are being extracted and whether there is really a justification in antitrust law for everything that has been created.”

Microsoft distributes multiple apps in Apple’s ‌App Store‌, and is required to pay Apple 15 to 30 percent for any customers who subscribe to its Office 365 service through Apple’s platform.

‌Tim Cook‌ and other tech CEOS will testify in the antitrust hearing on Monday, July 27 at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, and a livestream will be available on YouTube.

This article, “Microsoft President Met With U.S. Antitrust Committee Investigating Apple and Expressed Concerns Over App Store” first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Apple CEO Tim Cook, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Alphabet/Google CEO Sundar Pichai, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg are all set to participate in an antitrust hearing next Monday held by the United States House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee as part of an ongoing antitrust investigation on competition in digital markets.


Ahead of the hearing, the committee spoke with Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith, with The Information sharing details on the virtual meeting.

The committee wanted to talk with Smith so he could "provide Microsoft's perspective as a big tech company" formerly involved in antitrust regulation over Windows, but Smith also reportedly shared Microsoft's concerns with the way Apple operates the App Store.

Topics covered included Apple's arbitrary ‌App Store‌ approval processes, the 30 percent cut that Apple takes from app purchases and subscriptions, and requirements that developers use Apple's in-app purchase system.

At a Politico event in June, Smith expressed similar sentiments and said that it's time for regulators to take a look at app stores and the payment requirements.
"They impose requirements that increasingly say there is only one way to get on to our platform and that is to go through the gate that we ourselves have created. In some cases they create a very high price per toll - in some cases 30% of your revenue has to go to the toll keeper."

"The time has come - whether we are talking about D.C. or Brussels - for a much more focused conversation about the nature of app stores, the rules that are being put in place, the prices and the tolls that are being extracted and whether there is really a justification in antitrust law for everything that has been created."
Microsoft distributes multiple apps in Apple's ‌App Store‌, and is required to pay Apple 15 to 30 percent for any customers who subscribe to its Office 365 service through Apple's platform.

‌Tim Cook‌ and other tech CEOS will testify in the antitrust hearing on Monday, July 27 at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, and a livestream will be available on YouTube.
This article, "Microsoft President Met With U.S. Antitrust Committee Investigating Apple and Expressed Concerns Over App Store" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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New EU Regulation Gives Developers More Protection and Transparency in App Store Review

App Store developers in the European Union now have more protections afforded to them following the passage of new regulations this week, according to MCV/Develop and GamesIndustry.biz.


As noted by developer Steven Troughton-Smith, one of the new requirements is that operators of app distribution platforms like Apple provide developers with a minimum of 30 days notice before removing their apps from the ‌App Store‌, with exceptions for illicit or inappropriate content, safety concerns, counterfeiting, fraud, malware, spam, and apps that have suffered a data breach.

Other protections for developers include transparency on how ranking charts and “trending” lists are generated, mandatory disclosures by platform operators about preferential treatment being given to any specific developers or publishers, and access to third-party mediation for any disputes that can not be resolved through the normal app review process.

Apple has been under increasing scrutiny for its ‌App Store‌ practices, with the EU currently exploring antitrust issues related to the platform. The company also recently found itself embroiled in controversy over its rejection of apps for new premium email service Hey for not including an in-app subscription option.

Apple has taken a few steps to address app review concerns in recent weeks, allowing developers to challenge not only decisions about whether an app is in violation of Apple’s review guidelines but also the guidelines themselves. Apple will also no longer delay bug fix updates for most guideline issues, allowing those updates to be delivered to users while any guideline issues can be addressed in a subsequent update.

This article, “New EU Regulation Gives Developers More Protection and Transparency in App Store Review” first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

App Store developers in the European Union now have more protections afforded to them following the passage of new regulations this week, according to MCV/Develop and GamesIndustry.biz.


As noted by developer Steven Troughton-Smith, one of the new requirements is that operators of app distribution platforms like Apple provide developers with a minimum of 30 days notice before removing their apps from the ‌App Store‌, with exceptions for illicit or inappropriate content, safety concerns, counterfeiting, fraud, malware, spam, and apps that have suffered a data breach.

Other protections for developers include transparency on how ranking charts and "trending" lists are generated, mandatory disclosures by platform operators about preferential treatment being given to any specific developers or publishers, and access to third-party mediation for any disputes that can not be resolved through the normal app review process.

Apple has been under increasing scrutiny for its ‌App Store‌ practices, with the EU currently exploring antitrust issues related to the platform. The company also recently found itself embroiled in controversy over its rejection of apps for new premium email service Hey for not including an in-app subscription option.

Apple has taken a few steps to address app review concerns in recent weeks, allowing developers to challenge not only decisions about whether an app is in violation of Apple's review guidelines but also the guidelines themselves. Apple will also no longer delay bug fix updates for most guideline issues, allowing those updates to be delivered to users while any guideline issues can be addressed in a subsequent update.
This article, "New EU Regulation Gives Developers More Protection and Transparency in App Store Review" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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