Australian app developers join class action against tech giants Apple and Google
Australian app designers and founders are taking on Apple and Google alleging the companies abused their market power to charge 30 per cent commissions on in-app spending while blocking competitors from offering better value payment systems.
The California-based tech giants are already facing a consumer class action alleging the companies abused their market dominance to inflate prices by forcing developers to use their platforms, inflating the cost of in-app purchases.
The class action alleges Google and Apple breached Australian Consumer Law and forced up prices by not allowing competitors to offer alternate, better value payment systems.
Last month, the Federal Court of Australia allowed the class action to be expanded to include local app designers/founders who may have suffered loss or damage due the conduct of Apple and Google.
“This case is about an egregious misuse of market power by each of Apple and Google which should result in significant compensation being paid to App Developers and Consumers” said Maurice Blackburn Class Action Principal Kimi Nishimura.
The class action alleges that Apple makes 55 per cent of smart phones sold in Australia, with the rest running on Google’s Android system.
In August 2021, Apple settled a class action in the United States and allowed app developers to use alternative payment systems.
The class action is being run jointly by Maurice Blackburn Lawyers and Phi Finney McDonald.
“Google and Apple are quite rightly facing increased scrutiny from regulators. And now this landmark case gives consumers and app developers the opportunity to stand up to these global tech giants and seek compensation,” said Phi Finney McDonald Principal Joel Phibbs.