AMSTERDAM, Jan 17 (Reuters) - The Dutch consumer watchdog
said on Monday it would vet Apple's move to allow
developers of dating apps to offer non-Apple payment options in
the Netherlands, to see if the changes are enough to meet
Late last month the Dutch Authority for Consumers and
Markets (ACM) ordered Apple to make changes for apps on offer in
the Apple App Store in the Netherlands by Jan. 15 or face fines,
after it found that the U.S. company had abused its market
dominance by requiring dating app developers, including Tinder
owner Match Group Inc, to exclusively use Apple's
in-app payment system.
ACM said in a statement that Apple had informed it about
how the company intends to comply and the watchdog will now
assess whether Apple's response is adequate.
"As part of that assessment, ACM will sit down with
dating-app providers, among other interested parties," it said.
The Coalition for App Fairness, which represents a group of
app developers including Match Group and Epic Games, could not
immediately be reached for comment. The group had applauded the
ACM's December decision.
Apple's practice of requiring developers to use its system
and pay commissions of 15-30% on digital goods purchases has
come under scrutiny from regulators and lawmakers around the
world. However, the Dutch order and Apple's response cover only
the Netherlands and only dating apps.
In a post on its developers' blog, Apple said that while it
is appealing the ACM decision, it would comply by introducing
two new options "exclusively applicable to dating apps on the
Netherlands App Store, that provide additional payment
processing options for users".
However, a spokesperson for the company said that Apple
would still require some commission from developers on
transactions that make use of the new options.
They could not specify how much those commissions will be or
how Apple will enforce commissions for payments that don't flow
through its systems.
In Apple's blog post it noted that developers were not
required to use the alternative options, and warned that Apple
would not be able to help with safety or refunds of payments
that take place outside its systems because it will "not be
directly aware of them".
(Reporting by Toby Sterling; Editing by Kirsten Donovan and