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Apple Fined $5.7 Mn Again Over Dutch Dating App Payments Order

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The Dutch antitrust watchdog Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has confirmed that it has fined tech giant Apple another 5 million euros ($5.72 million) over the dating app’s payment methods.

According to TechCrunch, the penalty relates to an order by the competition authority requiring Apple to allow local dating apps to use third-party payment providers for sales of digital content, rather than mandating these apps use Apple’s payment infrastructure, which incurs a commission fee to Apple.

The report said that Apple has been fighting the Dutch order since last year and continues to appeal against it.

But last month — as the first deadline for compliance with the threat of a penalty loomed — it agreed to let apps plug into alternative payment tech, saying it would be introducing two “optional new entitlements” exclusively for dating apps on the Netherlands App Store so they could provide additional payment processing options for users as required by the order.

Apple’s claim of compliance last month was quickly met by a fine by the ACM for non-compliance — as the regulator took issue with Apple foot-dragging on fulfilling all the requirements of the order.

The exact details remain murky as parts of a court order related to Apple’s challenge to the ACM’s order have not been unsealed so the competition regulator has said it is limited in what it can discuss.

Apple, meanwhile, has concentrated its public-facing comms on this saga at attacking the order — claiming the changes “could compromise the user experience, and create new threats to user privacy and data security”, as it put it in a statement last month.

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