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Apple’s objections to $53 million in fines rejected by Dutch competition regulator

Apple may be the favorite phone brand in the Netherlands (as the Statista data shows), but the Dutch regulators lately think little of the iPhone makers.

The Cupertino giant has faced rejection from the Dutch competition regulator ACM (Authority for Consumers and Markets). Apple objected to fines that currently add up to $53 million, but the Dutch ACM is adamant on the issue.

Can we have some context, please

Internally, this “objection-rejection” thing has been known from July 13, 2023, when ACM made the decision to say “No!” to Apple’s objections, but it has only now been published. Apple is ready to take this to court: “We disagree with the ACM’s original order, which degrades investment incentives and is not in the best interests of our users’ privacy or data security. As the ACM has denied our administrative appeal, we will appeal to the Netherlands courts”, Apple told Reuters.

The ACM vs. Apple beef in the Netherlands is a long-standing dispute over… dating apps in the App Store. The problem Dutch authorities saw in the way Apple was conducting its business was due to it not allowing alternative payment systems for Dutch dating apps. That’s all they wanted – an alternative payment system to be allowed on the App Store, because Dutch people were not happy with the commission fee that the App Store takes on purchases.

The ACM says that Apple has now complied with “most of its demands”, but there’s an additional – undisclosed one – that they haven’t complied with.

It’s still unknown what’s the character of that final order that Apple failed to comply with, but the ACM regulator has promised to publish details should it win in court.

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