Open App Markets Act: Advancing a Fair and Competitive App Marketplace
For too long, the two dominant app stores have abused their monopoly power to throttle competition and innovation, harming consumers by limiting their choices and freedom in the digital marketplace.
The bipartisan Open App Markets Act would rein in these gatekeepers and the unfair and anticompetitive practices running rampant in app stores today to make a freer, fairer, more competitive app economy of tomorrow.
The Open App Markets Act would:
Fix a Broken App Economy and Promote Innovation
- Bar app stores from requiring apps to only use the native in-app payment systems on the mobile device, through which these native app stores charge exorbitant fees and bar communication between the apps and their own customers, which could preclude customers from taking advantage of lower costs, rebates, and other promotions
- Open equal access to operating systems, technical information, and features so that both app stores and third party developers have equal footing in creating their products and services
Protect Consumers, Strengthen Freedom and Choice
- Allow users to choose what apps they want as their defaults, easily delete pre-installed apps they don’t want, and install their choice of app store on their own devices
- Break down the barriers app stores put between developers and their own users, allowing developers to communicate directly with their customers — including to offer discounts and refunds
Prohibit Anticompetitive Practices in the App Marketplace
- Ban app stores from “self-preferencing,” engaging in behaviors that put their own products at an advantage over those of competitors, including ranking their apps above others and suppressing competing apps
- Prohibit app stores from using the confidential business information of third party apps to create a competing product