Apple's App Store facilitated transactions worth $500 billion in 2019

Marco Green
June 16, 2020

The investigation follows complaints from music streaming service Spotify and an e-book distributor Rakuten Kobo on the impact of the App Store's rules on the competition. We're committed to doing even more to support and nurture the global App Store community - from one-developer shops in almost every country to businesses that employ thousands of workers - as it continues to foster innovation, create jobs, and propel economic growth for the future.

Apple announced on Monday that its App Store facilitated an estimated $519 billion in billings and sales in 2019.

The amounts cited include app purchases, physical and digital goods and services bought through apps, as well as items bought through other channels, such as a video streaming services, that are principally consumed through apps. The study found that more than 85% of the $519 billion accrues to third-party developers and businesses.

Apple has released the results of a study that found its App Store spurred US$458 billion (A$660 billion) in sales previous year from categories such as retail of physical goods, ride-hailing and advertising from which the iPhone maker takes no commission.

The case was triggered by a complaint from Swedish music streaming service Spotify a year ago.

"Apple obtained a "gatekeeper" role when it comes to the distribution of apps and content to users of Apple's popular devices", said Margrethe Vestager, the European Commission vice president.

Apple Apple app store Apple app store ecosystem apple antitrust scrutiny app store revenue 2019 app store developers
Image credit Apple

The study found US$45 billion (A$65 billion) came from in-app advertising.

The EU's executive Commission said on Tuesday it was looking at whether the rules Apple imposes on app developers give it an unfair advantage. That's because direct billings are a reliable indication of total sales generated by so-called "multi-platform apps".

The antitrust investigation will focus on Apple' in-app purchase suite, and the restrictions that stop developers from explaining how customers can buy or upgrade through another platform.

The Apple App Store has more than 2 billion apps and Apple says half a billion people access it every week across 175 countries. Mario Kart Tour was the most downloaded game of 2019. The company is holding its annual Worldwide Developers Conference next week.

Apple is also under increasing regulatory scrutiny over the operation of the App Store, with lawmakers questioning the various business practices of the App Store.

"The results [of the study] encapsulate the full sweep of the dynamic, competitive, and flourishing app economy, which has unleashed a torrent of innovation and revolutionised the way the world learns, works and connects", Apple said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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