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Spotify claims Apple rejected their app update that included price information for users in the EU.

Apple's rejection of Spotify's updated iOS app, which included pricing information for European Union users, has reignited tensions between the two tech giants. The Swedish audio streaming company had submitted the new version to comply with the European Commission's ruling in a music streaming case, mandating basic pricing and website details. However, Apple rejected the update, prompting Spotify to accuse the tech giant of flouting EU directives and prioritizing profit over consumer interests and legal compliance.

According to Spotify, Apple's refusal to approve the update stems from a demand for payment, characterized as a "new tax," for communicating pricing information to customers. Spotify's spokesperson criticized Apple's actions, alleging a disregard for both developers and consumers. Meanwhile, Apple defended its stance, insisting that Spotify must accept the terms of the Music Streaming Services Entitlement in the European Economic Area (EEA) before the app update can be approved.

The contentious issue revolves around Apple's requirement for music streaming services to include links to their websites within the app, allowing users to explore alternative payment options outside the App Store. However, Apple would levy a significant 27 percent commission on transactions made through these external links. Spotify opted not to include the in-app link in its update, expressing reluctance to adhere to Apple's conditions, which it perceives as anti-competitive and financially burdensome.

In response, the European Commission has expressed interest in assessing whether Apple's actions comply with its previous decision. The Commission will also evaluate any modifications made by Apple to its App Store business terms under the Digital Markets Act. This development comes after Brussels fined Apple a substantial EUR 1.84 billion for allegedly impeding competition from music streaming rivals through App Store restrictions. As the debate continues, the clash between Spotify and Apple underscores broader concerns about fair competition and consumer choice within digital ecosystems.

April 26, 2024 2:45 p.m. 7920

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