Dutch regulator happy after Apple changes unfair conditions for dating apps

by IANS |

London, June 13 (IANS) The Netherlands' competition regulator has expressed happiness after Apple changed its unfair conditions to allow different methods of payment in Dutch dating apps.

With this concession, Apple will meet the requirements that the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) set under European and Dutch competition rules.

Until recently, customers of dating apps had only been able to pay using the payment method that Apple imposed.

"We are glad that Apple has finally brought its conditions in line with European and Dutch competition rules. That offers app providers more opportunities to compete. And consumers will ultimately reap the benefits, too," said Martijn Snoep, Chairman of the Board of ACM.

ACM had alleged that Apple abused its dominant position with those practices.

From now on, dating-app providers are able to let their customers pay in different ways.

ACM forced these changes by imposing an order subject to periodic penalty payments.

In the end, the sum of all penalty payments totaled 50 million euros.

In August 2021, ACM imposed an order subject to periodic penalty payments on Apple.

Apple filed an objection against this order.

At the same time, Apple asked the court to suspend the order as well as publication of ACM's decision.

In January 2022, the periodic penalty payments started to kick in, and went up to the maximum of 50 million euros.

"That is why Apple must pay a total penalty of 50 million euros. Apple now complies with the rules. That is why ACM no longer needs to impose a new order subject to periodic penalty payments," said the competition watchdog.

Apple last week said that following productive conversations with the ACM, the company is introducing additional adjustments to its plan to comply with the regulator's order about dating apps on the App Store in the Netherlands.

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