It was not immediately clear how many small app developers will be affected by the change; Apple’s announcement said only that the update will benefit “the vast majority of developers” on the App Store. Apple declined to elaborate.
More than 97% of iOS app publishers tracked by app metrics firm Sensor Tower generate less than $1 million a year in app-based consumer spending. Those developers’ economic activity accounted for an estimated 5% of the iOS App Store’s total revenues in 2019, Sensor Tower told CNN Business.
Apple’s App Store fees have increasingly come under scrutiny as lawmakers and regulators have zeroed in on Apple’s dominance over iOS.
Apple has previously said that its fee structure reflects common practice across the digital services industry — this year, it commissioned a report by the Analysis Group, a consulting firm, affirming that claim. Apple has also said its policies are meant to enhance consumer security.
Asked whether the recent antitrust scrutiny may have played a role in Wednesday’s announcement, an Apple spokesman did not provide a direct answer but told CNN Business that it has only ever lowered the fees developers must pay.
Advocates of aggressive antitrust action hailed Wednesday’s decision as an outgrowth of the public pressure.