NIX Solutions: Apple Exempts Free App Developers from Paying €0.5 for Each First Installation

Apple has accommodated app developers in the European Union by exempting some from paying the previously introduced Core Technology Fee (CTF), The Verge reports. This step is intended to soften the rules that recently came into force, which have caused a lot of criticism among developers.

NIX Solutions

Exemption Criteria and Grace Periods

The core technology levy would require developers to pay Apple €0.50 for each first app installation for a year. However, this fee will only begin to apply after one million installations per year in the EU.

According to a statement made by Apple on Thursday, the CTF will not be charged to app creators who do not participate in the monetization program or offer in-app sales of digital content or physical goods. This, Apple says, will allow students, hobbyists, and other non-profit developers to create popular apps for free.

In addition, small companies with annual revenues of less than €10 million will receive a three-year grace period and will not have to pay CTF. Even if they exceed 1 million app installs per year during these three years, they will not be charged. This will allow startups to develop their business more actively and freely, without thinking about additional costs. However, if a developer’s income grows to between 10 and 50 million euros over three years, Apple will start charging after the first million annual installs. However, the amount of the fee will be limited to 1 million euros per year.

Mixed Reactions and Future Developments

Apple’s decision to exempt some developers from the CTF caused mixed reactions. Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney called it “another bad move.” Apple is still illegally demanding that it share a portion of the revenue from apps distributed through other stores. At the same time, many indie developers were relieved by the decision. They have previously expressed concerns that they would not be able to pay CTF if their apps unexpectedly gained popularity. Now this threat has been lifted for them.

In addition, Apple promised that in the fall it will apply the new rules to applications for iPad tablets, notes NIX Solutions. Let us recall that this week the EU obliged Apple to provide competitive access to iPadOS within six months with the ability to install applications bypassing the App Store. Developers will be able to either accept alternative terms of business with enhanced capabilities for iPad, or remain under Apple’s previous rules.

Thus, as The Verge explains, Apple is making some concessions for developers essentially under pressure from EU regulators. Many still consider the company’s policy towards third-party applications to be unfair and demand more openness of its ecosystem. We’ll keep you updated on any further developments in this story.