Apple to allow third-party app stores in windfall for NFTs and crypto


Tech giant Apple is gearing up to allow third-party app stores on its devices to comply with new European Union (EU) antitrust requirements, which could be seen as a big win for NFT and crypto app developers, at least in Europe.

Under the new rules, European customers would be able to download alternative app markets outside of the Apple-owned App Store, allowing them to download apps that circumvent Apple’s 30% fees and app restrictions, according to a Bloomberg report from the December 13th. report citing those familiar with the matter.

Apple currently has strict rules for NFT apps that virtually force users to make in-app purchases subject to 30% commission from Applewhile the apps cannot support cryptocurrency payments.

Apple’s application of your ruler led to a block of Coinbase’s self-custody wallet app update on December 1, as Apple wanted to “collect 30% of the gas fee” via in-app purchases, something that is “clearly not possible” according to Coinbase.

He then claimed that Apple wanted the wallet to disable NFT transactions if they could not be made through its in-app purchase system.

Alex Salnikov, co-founder of NFT Rarible marketplace tweeted on Dec. 13 in response to news that a “crypto app store” could be built and would be a “great candidate” for a VC-backed startup.

Apple’s move to open up its ecosystem is in response to the EU Digital Markets Law aim to regulate the so-called “gatekeepers” and ensure that the platforms behave fairly with part of the measures that allow “third parties to interoperate with the gatekeeper’s own services”.

It will be applicable from May 2023 and companies must fully comply by 2024.

Apple has not decided whether it will comply with a part of the law that allows developers to install alternative payment systems within applications that do not involve Apple. if it complies, it could open payment systems that allow cryptocurrencies.

Related: LBRY alleges Apple forced it to censor certain terms amid the COVID-19 pandemic

The tech giant is considering mandating security requirements for software outside of its store, such as verification by Apple, in a bid to protect users against insecure apps.

Changes to Apple’s closed ecosystem would apply only within the EU, other regions would have to pass similar laws, such as the proposed Open Application Markets Act in the United States Congress of Senators Marsha Blackburn and Richard Blumenthal.