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Dirty tricks or small wins: developers are skeptical of Apple’s App Store rules

Illustration depicting several Apple logos on a lime green background.
Illustration by Kristen Radtke / The Verge

Apple is finally opening up the iPhone to sideloading and alternative app stores — at least in the European Union. It’s also allowing developers to use third-party payment processors in their apps. This is all part of Apple’s efforts to comply with the EU’s new Digital Markets Act (DMA), and at the surface, these changes make it seem like Apple is giving in to regulatory pressure.

But some developers are already responding with criticism about Apple’s new guidelines. Epic Games CEO (and part-time Apple critic) Tim Sweeney notably called out the changes as “hot garbage,” even as Epic announced it would be launching its own app store through them. That’s because Apple’s new business terms come with some pretty big disadvantages —…

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