Apple has been fined $ 12 million by the Russian antitrust regulator (FAS) for allegedly abusing its dominant position on the App Store, Reuters reported. The investigation stemmed from a complaint filed in 2019 by Kaspersky Lab, which claimed that Apple had forced it to limit the functionality of its Safe Kids app, shortly after Apple introduced its own Screen Time feature with iOS. 12.
Last summer, the regulator sided with Kaspersky, saying Apple illegally blocked developers after forcing them to distribute their apps through its iOS store. At the time, Apple said the software put “user security and privacy at risk.”
In addition to the fine, the FAS ordered Apple to remove provisions that “give it the right to reject (not allow) third-party apps in the App Store for any reason, even if they all meet” conditions”. He also said that Apple needs to take steps to ensure that developers of parental control apps can distribute apps without limiting functionality. Apple said it “respectfully disagrees” with the decision and promised to appeal, according to Reuters.
The move comes as Apple faces increasing scrutiny of its control of the App Store in the US and EU. Later this week, the EU is expected to bring charges stemming from a Spotify 2019 complaint about Apple’s 30% discount for in-app purchases, which gives its own music service an unfair advantage.
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