Apple in August said that it would pay out $100 million and make changes to the App Store to settle a class-action lawsuit brought about by developers. The settlement offer received preliminary approval yesterday from Judge Yvonne Gonzalez-Rogers, who is overseeing the case. The judge is also overseeing the Epic v. Apple lawsuit.
Apple will create a $100 million fund, which developers can access based on their historic App Store proceeds. Developers who earned $1 million or less through the U.S. storefront for their apps in every calendar year between June 4, 2015, and April 26, 2021, can receive between $250 and $30,000. Higher payments will be made to those who have participated more extensively in the App Store ecosystem.
Eligible developers will be able to make claims when the settlement receives final approval and can sign up to be alerted when claims are being accepted.
Apple also agreed to maintain the App Store Small Business Program in its current structure for the next three years. The Cupertino company will allow developers to use communication methods like email to share information about payment methods available outside of their iOS apps.
There will also be additional App Store pricing options, the publication of an annual transparency report based on App Store data, and tools that allow developers to appeal the rejection of an app.
In 2019, a group of iOS developers accused Apple of using its App Store monopoly to impose “profit-killing” commissions. The developers were upset with Apple’s 30% cut of the action. Apple later introduced the App Store Small Business Program, cutting commissions to 15% for developers making under $1 million in a calendar year.