Japan's Smartphone App Market to Witness Competition Reforms | Apple and Google

Japan takes steps to promote competition in the smartphone app market, targeting Apple and Google's dominance. Learn about the proposed reforms and their impact on app store operators and developers.

Jun 17, 2023 - 06:49
Jun 17, 2023 - 06:50
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Japan's Smartphone App Market to Witness Competition Reforms | Apple and Google
Japan's Smartphone App Market to Witness Competition Reforms | Apple and Google

In a bid to enhance competition in the smartphone app industry, Japan has unveiled plans to restrict major app store operators, such as Apple and Google, from imposing their own payment systems on software developers, as stated by a government panel. The panel's finalized report, released on Friday, also recommends that prominent smartphone operating system providers should be required to offer users alternative secure methods for obtaining apps, bypassing their respective app stores.

In Japan's mobile operating system market, Apple's iOS and Alphabet's Google Android have a significant presence. Apple's app store exclusively allows users to download iPhone apps solely through their platform, while both Apple and Google mandate software developers to utilize their proprietary payment systems, which can charge commissions of up to 30%.

According to the report, the implementation of necessary legislative measures is now under consideration. Additionally, the Asahi Shimbun daily reported that the government aims to present a related bill to the parliament as early as the following year.

Key figures involved in the government panel include Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura and Economy Minister Shigeyuki Goto. The proposed reforms aim to foster a more competitive landscape within the smartphone app market in Japan, promoting fairness and providing users with greater choices and flexibility in app acquisition.

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