Last Wednesday, Patently Apple posted a report titled "Apple's App Store Structure is being threatened by a proposed North Dakota's Senate Bill." Today we're learning that the North Dakota state senate voted 36-11 on Tuesday to not pass bill 2333 that would have required app stores to enable software developers to use their own payment processing software and avoid fees charged by Apple and Google.
CNBC reports that "The vote is a victory for Apple, which says that the App Store is a core part of its product and that its tight control over its rules keeps iPhone users safe from malware and scams.
North Dakota’s bill is the first major U.S. state-level legislation to address the Apple and Google app stores, which take fees from app store sales including in-app purchases of digital items. If the state senate had passed it, it would still have been debated and voted on in the North Dakota house.
An Apple representative declined to comment on Tuesday.
One reason why this North Dakota bill was closely watched is that it could inspire other states, such as Arizona, which are currently debating legislation targeting Apple’s commercial power.
On Tuesday, discussion of the legislation focused on Apple, which the senators tended to avoid naming due to decorum rules, instead referring to it as a "technology company "or, as North Dakota state senator Randy Burckhard said, "the same fruit Adam and Eve were not asked to eat."
'North Dakota is not the place to settle a dispute between companies on what the commission rates or payment systems should be,' Jerry Klein, a state senator who opposed the bill, said."
Patently Apple's report last week stated that "It would have been interesting to know which tech companies are behind this legislation. Unfortunately The Verge didn't present that side of the story." Today we learned that Epic Games was behind the push for bill 2333 to pass.
CNBC noted that "Epic Games is part of an effort called Coalition for App Fairness (CAF), which includes software companies like Spotify, Match Group and 50 other companies that have chafed under Apple’s control of its App Store.
The Coalition for App Fairness had lobbied around the North Dakota bill, a spokesman for the coalition said on Tuesday. A North Dakota lobbyist who worked on the bill represents Epic Games and helped Epic Games contribute testimony, Tera Randall, Epic’s VP of communications and policy, said in an email.
CAF executive director Meghan DiMuzio said in a statement: "The Coalition for App Fairness wants to see urgent changes to the App Store and is supportive of policy solutions at the state, federal, and international levels." For more, read the full CNBC report.