The Arizona House of Representatives is trying to do something that Apple competitors have largely been unable to do: take a big bite out of the billion-dollar company.
The legislature voted 31-29 on Wednesday to pass a bill that takes away fees being paid by app makers to use payment processing software.
The plan is clearly targeted at Google Play and Apple’s App Store and would allow app makers to use their own tools to process payments, avoiding those fees charged by Apple and Google.
The Coalition for App Fairness, a group representing app makers including Spotify and Epic Games, backed the bill.
The passage of the bill is only a first step, and its future is far from certain, though, given the challenges that lie ahead in the Arizona Senate – and the possibility Gov. Doug Ducey could veto the bill.
Apple is not likely surprised at the latest attempt to cut into its fee structure.
Last November, the iPhone maker announced the reduction of its App Store commission rate to 15%– sounds good, right?
The caveat? It applied only to software developers with less than $1 million in annual net sales on its platform.
So it didn’t do much to placate Facebook, Spotify, Epic (makers of Fortnite among other popular apps) and others.
“Apple’s anti-competitive behavior threatens all developers on iOS, and this latest move further demonstrates that their App Store policies are arbitrary and capricious,” Spotify said at the time.
The App Store offers just about 2 million apps, most of which are developed by the top companies.
In a CNBC story late last year, it was reported that the top 1% of app publishers generate 93% of App Store and Google Play revenue, according to a 2019 estimate from app analytics firm Sensor Tower.