Last week Apple said it would comply with a ruling from Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) and allow dating apps in the Dutch App store to offer alternative payment options to Apple’s IAP offering.
Now the same authority has reviewed Apple’s proposed solution and ruled it does not sufficiently meet the requirements of a previous ruling.
Not only that, they have fined Apple 5 million euro and will continue to fine Apple each week up to 50 million euros until Apple complies.
The issues they say are that:
Apple’s proposed solution requires developers to ask and receive approval for a special App Store entitlement to point users to third-party payment methods.
And that developer must choose between a third-party in app purchase option or sending customers to payment options outside the app. The ACM says Apple must allow developers to offer both if they wish.
Apple also still has not said what amount of commission they intend to take on 3rd party or outside payments, only that they do want a cut. Though this was not brought up as one of the ACM objections to Apple’s solution.
Developers are also apparently not happy with iCloud and CloudKit
Well, really iCloud sync.
CloudKit is the technology that makes it easier for developer to build iCould syncing into their apps
But developers on Apple’s dev forums have been reporting issues for about the last two months that there are issues.
9to5 Mac reports specifically that the developer of GoodNotes has had reports from users that they are getting consistent errors that make it seem like the service is unavailable
Luckily the app retries syncing and ultimately gets through, but syncing reliability in 3rd party apps is effected.
Developers have been complaining since the early iOS 15 betas and Apple seems to have been largely silent and unresponsive.
Some have become so frustrated that they have even disabled iCloud sync in their apps all together.
Seems like the reports from 9to5 Mac and pressure from the community helped Apple take notice.
Within days of the reports Apple contacted developer to let them know the cause of the the 503 errors/sync failures had been fixed. They didn’t say what the issue was or how they addressed it of course.
Apple is also now apparently allowing “unlisted” apps in the App Store
Basically these app will be available via links (or from Apple Business Manager or Apple School Manager) but will not be found via browsing or search in the App store. They also will not be featured or highlighted.
Why would a developer want that?
These would be apps for employees, apps for specific events, sales apps, or research apps. So say you had an app to help your internal sales team sell your products using iPad. Or an iPad app for research teams at your university.
for those types of apps developers can submit a request to receive a link that can point to their app.
Apple TV+ slowly gains US marketshare
According to a new report by JustWatch and pointed out by 9to5 Mac, Apple gained US marketshare among streaming services in the 4th quarter.
According to the report Apple’s share of the US streaming market went up by 1 percent taking them to a 5 percent share.
So they are not dominating, but slowly moving in the right direction and they did edge out Paramount+
The rest of the market is fairly well distributed with Netflix having a 25 percent share, though that’s down 2 percent. Followed by Prime video at 19 percent, Hulu and Disney+ each at 13 percent, and HBO Mx with 12 percent.
Apple this week picked up a new film fresh out of Sundance according to Variety
“Cha Cha Real Smooth” is a film from Cooper Raiff who also stars in the movie.
It apparently garnered a lot of buzz and attention at this years Sundance Film Festival and a bidding war ensued between Apple, Netflix, Amazon and Sony Pictures.
According to the report Apple ultimately won out paying possibly around $15 million for the rights to the film.
Some features from Apple’s new betas
Apple released a bunch of new betas for iOS and macOS this week and there notably some cool stuff.
First and foremost macOS 12.3 and iPadOS 15.4 have finally made Universal Control available for us to get a look at
This was enough to finally get me to update to macOS Monterey (the public beta no less)
I tried it out and it’s “Magical”. Worth the wait.
Universal Control can be found under the Display panel of System Preferences on the Mac, or under General > AirPlay & Handoff > Cursor & Keyboard (Beta).
iOS 15.4 also has new functionality that will allow you to use FaceID even with a mask on
This new version does not require that you have an Apple Watch.
Apple says it scans the “unique features around the eye area” to authenticate you using FaceID.
You will need to have an iPhone 12 or iPhone 13 model though.
tvOS 15.4 adds a new “Up Next” item the video player
So now you can select “Up Next” while watching a video, presumably during the credits, to select an item form your “Up Next” list that you might want to watch next.
tvOS 15.4 also seems to add a feature to allow you to connect to “captive” WiFi networks, like you might find in a hotel
It works by allowing you to use your iPhone or iPad to connect your Apple TV to the captive network
Bloomberg is reporting that Apple may add the ability to use your iPhone to receive contactless payments.
Of course currently you can use Apple Pay and NFC to make payments
But business who want to accept Apple Pay (or other contactless payment options) have to use a 3rd party reader, like Square
But according to the report Apple is looking into allowing apps to be able to leverage the NFC chip in the iPhone to read payments
They say the feature could be enabled via a software update and may be added in the iOS 15.4 update.
Apple logs another record quarter
Apple had is Q1 2022 earnings call this week and despite supply chain issues they came through with stellar numbers.
Revenue was up 11 percent year over year coming in at almost $124 billion with a profit of $34.6 billion
$71.63 billion: iPhone (Up 9% year-over-year)
$10.85 billion: Mac (Up 25% year-over-year)
Mac sales broke through the $10 billion mark for the first time ever.
Apple says a big part of that growth was due to the success of the redesigned MacBook Pro powered by the M1
They say the M1 MacBook Pros are selling particularly well within the enterprise
$7.25 billion: iPad (Down 14% year-over-year)
Apple said part some of the decline for iPads was due to supply constraints in “legacy nodes”.
$14.70 billion: Wearables, Home, and Accessories (Up 13% year-over-year)
$19.5 billion: Services (Up 24% year-over-year)
Growth in China alone was up 21 percent.
Apple services margin is 72.4%
This is amazing, but it does make it a little bit harder for Apple to justify the fees charged to developer as something needed to cover costs and overhead (though to be fair I’m not sure they ever directly said that, though it’s been implied).
Overall gross margin for the quarter was at 43.8 percent
Services growth and revenue is also probably helped by the fact that Apple says there are now 1.8 billion active devices circulating around the planet.
If you work in IT or tech support in an Apple environment and have to manage multiple devices and machines you know how time consuming that can be.
As an Apple admin, the more you let users control which apps are installed on their devices, the better for you. Kandji’s Self Service app lets you do just that on both iOS and macOS.
Not only that, it will make your users a lot happier. I work in an environment that is extremely locked down and I can tell you it’s frustrating for me and my sys admins that I have to create a ticket every time I need something updated or installed on my Mac.
With Kandji you can show users a curated list of the apps that they can install on their own. You can customize that Self Service app with your own branding, help text, and software categories.
Apps in Kandji’s Auto App catalog can also be set to deliver via Self Service. And once installed, they are kept patched automatically.
Kandji has been focused on device autonomy through automated remediation since they first started. If an app is uninstalled or a setting changed, the Kandji agent detects it and fixes it, saving you time and stress.
Kandji can also help you protect endpoints by enforcing over 150 pre-built security controls. These controls go beyond the scope of the MDM framework to help you secure your devices. They also automatically remediate, even when your devices are offline.