A recent court decision in California may have significant implications for the use of cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on iOS apps. The ruling concluded that Apple had violated state competition laws by restricting app developers from using alternative in-app payment methods.
As a result, developers may now have the option to utilize cryptocurrencies and other payment methods outside of Apple’s App Store, potentially leading to increased use of crypto and NFTs on iOS apps.
The Apple Court Ruling
This ruling follows Apple’s recent clarification of its regulations on cryptocurrencies and NFTs in its App Store. While the updated rules permit the facilitation of cryptocurrency transactions on approved exchanges, they also prohibit apps from using their own mechanisms to unlock content or functionality, including cryptocurrencies and wallets. Additionally, any trading service for NFTs must employ Apple’s in-app payment mechanism, which takes up to a 30% cut of in-app payments.
Despite the limitations imposed, the court’s decision remains a significant victory for crypto and NFT enthusiasts. It opens up opportunities to explore alternative payment methods outside of Apple’s ecosystem, which could lead to increased acceptance of cryptocurrencies and NFTs on iOS apps.
Tim Sweeney, the founder, and CEO of Epic Games, expressed his gratitude for the ruling, stating that it frees iOS developers to offer consumers alternative payment options.
Apple’s Monopoly Power
The recent decision made by Apple regarding its monopoly power in the app marketplace has caused concern among users, particularly with the emergence of the metaverse, which is believed to be the future of the internet. To ensure its success, a decentralized and open ecosystem that is not controlled by any single entity, be it a company or government, is imperative.
This decision could also have implications for the European Union’s anti-monopolistic rules that require Apple to allow third-party app stores on its devices, providing consumers with an option to bypass the 30% commission charged by Apple.
Despite this, Apple’s stance is contradictory, as it has already interfered with NFT transactions sent on Coinbase’s self-custody wallet, claiming entitlement to “collect 30% of the gas fee” through in-app purchases.