WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rick VanMeter, Executive Director of the Coalition for App Fairness (CAF), released the following statement after the European Commission announced that Apple and Google have been designated as gatekeepers under the Digital Markets Act (DMA), which will soon apply pro-competition policies on each company’s core platform services, including the App Store and Google Play Store. Each company has six months from today to comply with the law.
“The designation of Apple and Google as gatekeepers gets us one step closer to a free and fair mobile app ecosystem that benefits and protects consumers and developers. Effective enforcement is crucial to achieve the goals of the DMA: fairness and contestability in the mobile app marketplace. Injecting competition into the marketplace will unleash innovation and lower prices for consumers.
“We’ve seen the great lengths Apple and Google will go to avoid compliance with regulatory efforts to bring competition to the mobile app marketplace. It is critical that the compliance plans from the gatekeepers are reviewed with a critical eye, so that the final regime meets the goals of the legislation and leaves no room for circumvention tactics. The DMA’s unique approach will force gatekeepers to make important changes to the way they operate for the first time, and we stand ready to support the European Commission throughout the process.”
Under the DMA, gatekeepers will be prohibited from a number of harmful, anti-competitive behaviors. Specifically, now that these gatekeepers have been designated, they will:
- Be required to allow consumers to download apps from alternative app stores and directly from the internet;
- Be required to allow developers to choose to offer alternative payment methods.
- No longer be able to decide which apps you need to have pre-installed on your devices;
- Not “self-preference” – exploiting the advantage of being the gatekeeper by treating their own products and services more favorably.
About the Coalition for App Fairness
The Coalition for App Fairness is an independent nonprofit organization formed to protect consumer choice, foster competition, and create a level playing field for all app and game developers globally. Originally formed by Basecamp, Blix, Blockchain.com, Deezer, Epic Games, the European Publishers Council, Match Group, News Media Europe, Prepear, Proton, Skydemon, Spotify, and Tile, CAF has rapidly grown from 13 to over 70 members since launching in September 2020. CAF offers membership to companies of any size — join today at appfairness.org.