South Korea may break Google and Apple’s payment system stranglehold

Satsuki Then - Aug 24, 2021, 6:26am CDT
South Korea may break Google and Apple’s payment system stranglehold

One of the biggest complaints from developers worldwide is that there isn’t enough payment options for developers to get paid using the Google or Apple platforms. Both Google and Apple charge significant sums to many developers, which significantly cuts into the profits of the companies working to develop the games and apps. However, the stranglehold Google and Apple have on commissions from software developers may be coming to an end in South Korea.

The South Korean parliament legislation and judiciary committee is expected to approve an amendment today to the country’s Telecommunications Business Act. The amendment has been nicknamed the “Anti-Google law” and aims directly at companies operating app stores within the country, including Google and Apple. The bill still needs final approval, and that final vote will happen tomorrow.

Both Google and Apple currently use systems that developers despise that force them to use proprietary payment systems in their respective app stores that can take as much as 30 percent of their earnings on some purchases. South Korean lawmakers say that developers will have to be given options to use other independent payment systems if the bill is passed into law.

Developers would certainly flock to alternative payment systems that take less of their profits. Both Google and Apple earn massive sums of money in South Korea and worldwide from their respective stores. Reports indicate Google Play earned over $5 billion for Google in South Korea during 2019.

Paying commission fees associated with the Apple App Store or Google Play is typically one of the biggest expenses developers face in bringing apps to market. Both Apple and Google have fought vigorously to prevent any alternative payment options from being available for developers. For example, the developers of the popular game Fortnite and Apple fought in court over massive amounts of money paid in commissions due to Apple’s commission payment scheme.


Must Read Bits & Bytes