(TargetLiberty.org) – South Korea’s government has taken a step towards loosening big tech’s increasing stranglehold on their lives. A new law prevents companies from forcing customers to use Big Tech’s payment systems.
On August 31, the South Korean parliament passed a bill that will force the operators of online app stores to allow alternative payment methods. The law is aimed squarely at Apple and Google, whose stores force app developers to process payments through systems that are also owned by the store operator. Currently, if a vendor sells an app in the Apple store, payments must be made using Apple Pay – and in many cases, Apple will take up to 30% of the money in “commission.”
In a global first, Google and Apple will have to open their app stores to alternative payment systems in South Korea, threatening their commissions https://t.co/ySAs1JSHdq
— The Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) August 31, 2021
The new law, which President Moon Jae-in is expected to sign, will allow app developers to choose other payment platforms as well as giving the government power to intervene if tech companies abuse their ability to block or delay apps.
Predictably, Big Tech isn’t happy. Apple claims the move will damage trust in the App Store, and leave customers open to fraud. Google protests that its payment model and service fee “help keep Android free” – by giving developers the tools and platform to access more consumers. The big question now is whether other countries will follow South Korea’s lead.
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