New Bill Could Totally Change How and Where You Purchase Apps

Photo by Wessen Wang via Unsplash

New Bill Could Totally Change How and Where You Purchase Apps

By Movieguide® Staff

A new bill could change how and where smartphone users get their apps.

The North Dakota Senate recently proposed a bill that has gained support from people who are tired of monopolistic app stores. However, the bill’s opposition notes that the state’s interference is potentially harmful.

Sen. Kyle Davison, R-Fargo, introduced Senate Bill 2333 to the Senate Industry, Business, and Labor Committee. The legislation seeks to bar primary app stores, like Apple’s iOS store and Google Play, from requiring app developers to use their service exclusively. The bill would also prohibit retaliation from the larger app stores.

Davison claims that the way things are currently run puts other app developers at a severe disadvantage “by raising prices and limiting choices for consumers.” 

“The purpose of the bill is to level the playing field for app developers in North Dakota and protect customers from devastating, monopolistic fees imposed by big tech companies,” Davison said about the 30% fee applied to both Apple’s and Google’s in-app purchases.

“They control so much about what consumers can get, what businesses can do, and it really puts these businesses in a tough position,” Onsharp President and CEO Joe Sandin of Fargo, said

DAWA Solutions Group President Jeff Zarling, of Williston, said the monopolization of the app stores goes past mere distribution: “[They have] injected themselves into every aspect of the revenue-generating model of every business that runs on their app store, in any transaction, anywhere down the line.”

Apple Chief Privacy Engineer Erik Neuenschwander opposed the bill: “[It] threatens to destroy the iPhone as you know it” and it would “undermine the privacy, security, safety, and performance that’s built into iPhone by design.”

“Simply put, we work hard to keep bad apps out of the App Store; (the bill) could require us to let them in,” Neuenschwander added.

So far, the North Dakota Senate has not made any decisive decisions regarding the bill.  

Chairman Sen. Jerry Klein R-Fessenden said, “there’s still some mulling to be done.”