Apple Introduces New Fees and Oversight for Sideloading Apps in the EU

Apple faces new legal requirements

Following recent updates regarding Apple’s plans to introduce new fees and oversight measures for third-party app downloads outside of its App Store, a closer examination of these changes is essential. These developments are a direct response to the European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA) of 2022, aimed at reducing anticompetitive practices in the tech industry.

Key Highlights

  • Apple to impose new fees and restrictions on developers for apps distributed outside its App Store in the EU.
  • The changes are a response to the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), which encourages fair competition and challenges Apple’s monopoly over app distribution.
  • Sideloading and the inclusion of third-party app stores will be a significant shift from Apple’s traditional approach.
  • Developers may face fees for sideloaded apps, impacting their revenue models.
  • Other tech companies like Meta, Spotify, and Microsoft are adapting to the DMA changes.
  • Apple’s Core Technology Fee is part of new business terms in Europe, alongside reduced commissions for digital purchases on iOS apps.

Apple faces new legal requirements

Key Developments in Apple’s New Strategy

Understanding the Digital Markets Act and Apple’s Response

The DMA is a regulatory framework designed to curb anticompetitive practices in the tech sector, particularly focusing on Apple’s control over app distribution through its App Store. Apple’s new policies include levying fees for sideloaded apps, similar to its approach to external links for alternative payment systems in the US. The specifics of how Apple will review apps not distributed through the App Store are still unclear.

Sideloading and Third-Party App Stores

A central aspect of the DMA is sideloading, allowing users to download and install apps from outside the App Store. This is a significant departure from Apple’s “walled-garden” approach and could challenge its long-standing monopoly over app distribution.

Developer Concerns and Industry Adaptation

Developers are apprehensive about the new fees and oversight, which could impact their revenue models, especially those relying on alternative payment systems or subscription services. Tech companies like Meta, Spotify, and Microsoft are making strategic moves in anticipation of these changes.

Apple’s New Business Terms and Fees

Apple is introducing new business terms in Europe, including a “Core Technology Fee.” This fee ensures Apple continues to take a cut even when developers use alternative app stores or payment methods. The fee structure is designed to reflect the value Apple provides through its platform and services.

Reduced Commissions and Payment Processing Options

Under the new terms, Apple is reducing the cut it takes from digital purchases on iOS apps in its App Store. Developers can choose to use Apple’s payment tech or opt for an alternative payment service provider within their app.

Regulatory Compliance and Developer Choices

Apple’s restructuring of business terms and the choices offered to developers must comply with the DMA’s requirements. The DMA demands fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory conditions for business users.

Apple’s response to the DMA in the EU marks a significant shift in its app distribution model. By introducing new fees and restrictions for sideloaded apps and third-party app stores, Apple maintains control while adapting to regulatory demands. The impact on developers and the broader app market remains to be seen, as the tech giant navigates this new regulatory environment.


About the author


James Miller

Senior writer & Rumors Analyst, James is a postgraduate in biotechnology and has an immense interest in following technology developments. Quiet by nature, he is an avid Lacrosse player. He is responsible for handling the office staff writers and providing them with the latest updates happenings in the world of technology. You can contact him at