LTA 127: March 2024

Let's Talk Apple Logo


This solo show starts with some followups from last month before diving into just a few regulatory and legal stories, some HR and acquisitions news, and a few highlights from Apple’s services and original content. The three main stories are the Digital Markets Act (again), the US DOJ’s Anti-Trust case against Apple, and some VisionPro Developments. The show finishes with a rundown of some other quick Apple-related stories that made the news in March.

You’ll find detailed show notes below the fold, and if you enjoy this free show, please consider clicking on the donate button at the top of the left side bar – the show is free for you to listen to, but not for Bart to Produce!

MP3 DownloadRSS FeediTunes

Updates & Followup

Quick updates to long-running stories the show continues to track, and to stories covered in recent shows.

Regulatory Rundown

Legal Latest

  • Apple -v- Epic: Epic wants Apple held in contempt of court for not following through on removing anti-steering measures —…

  • With the US Epic-v-Apple case officially over, the case in Australia has been un-paused, and merged with Epic's case against Google in that country (and the court expects it to last months) —…

  • Masimo -v- Apple: Apple made their case to the US Court of Appeals requesting that the US International Trade Commission (ITS) ruling against it be overturned on two grounds (listed below), Masimo now get to submit a rebuttal before the court will rule —…

    1. Because Masimo didn't actually have a product, just a CAD drawing, the ITC over-stepped their authority
    2. The patents the ITC based their decision on are fundamentally flawed, and were updated by Masimo after the Apple Watch was released in an attempt to "ensnare" Apple's real product
  • Share Holders -v- Apple: Apple have agreed to settle a long-running shareholder lawsuit that claimed Tim Cook mislead investors in Apple's last earnings call in 2018, which led up to a very rare revision of expected revenue in January 2019 – the crux was Cook down-playing problems in the Chinese market in 2018 before blaming those problems for the revision in 2019. The settlement is reported to be $490M, which Apple Insider point out is less than 1 day's earnings (or $61M per word!) —…

Apple HR & Acquisition News

Apple Services & Original Content Highlights

Main Stories

  • Probably related to main story 1 or 2 or both: Apple amends its App Review Guidelines world-wide to allow Mini apps, mini games, streaming games, chatbots, plug-ins, and some game emulators —…

    "Apps may offer certain software that is not embedded in the binary, specifically HTML5 mini apps and mini games, streaming games, chatbots, and plug-ins. Additionally, retro game console emulator apps can offer to download games"

    • There are a lot of restrictions on the games that can be offered by emulators, including a requirement that the full catalogue of all available games be published at a URL, and depending on interpretation, perhaps only the owners of the original games can offer them in emulation. Users running their own ROMs does not seem to fit the current guidelines —…
  1. Apple and the European Commission continue their back-and-forth over the Digital Markets Act (DMA)

    • Apple reversed their revocation of Epic Games' Swedish developer account —…

      • Following Apple's reversal, Epic announced it will be opening an EU store with a 12% revenue share with Epic —…
    • Apple continues to loosen restrictions on its EU App Store —…

      • Single-vendor app stores will be permitted after all

      • The templates for external payment links are now optional

      • Large developers in good standing (2 years on the App Store & 1M downloads in previous year) will be permitted to distribute apps directly from their websites without any App Store (apps will still need notarisation, so not true side-loading)

    • The EU held a public 'workshop' where all parties could air their opinions on Apple's compliance, or lack there of, with the commission and Apple – Apple defended their position, but did admit something needs to be done about the possibility of a viral app bankrupting a small developer because of the Core Platform…

    • A few days after the workshop the EU officially launched violation investigations into Apple, Google & Meta:…,… &…

      • Full text of the complaints —…

      • The Commissions Concerns Regarding Apple:

        • Is Apple's new European fee structure in compliance with the DMA?
        • Has Apple sufficiently loosened their anti-steering rules in Europe?
        • Is Apple's browser choice screen good enough?
        • Does Apple allow enough apps to be un-installed?
    • Related: Following the EC's massive €1.84Bn fine last month over anticompetitive practices in streaming music, Apple have added an entitlement to the App Store to allow Music streaming services in Europe to link out to their website for payments, and even to ask for email addresses to contact users directly (but as with similar payment processing opt-outs, Apple still expect a 27% cut of the revenue) —…

      • There are reports the EU are not happy that this change is sufficient, and are investigating, but there has been no official announcement (yet?) —…
  2. The US DOJ joins the fray! — sues Apple for Anti-trust

  3. Some notable Apple Vision Pro/visionOS Developments

Quick Stories


Note: When the textual description of a link is part of the link it is the title of the page being linked to, when the text describing a link is not part of the link it is a description written by Bart.

Emoji Meaning
A link to audio content, probably a podcast.
flag The story is particularly relevant to people living in a specific country, or, the organisation the story is about is affiliated with the government of a specific country.
A link to graphical content, probably a chart, graph, or diagram.
A link to an article behind a pay-wall.
A pinned story, i.e. one to keep an eye on that's likely to develop into something significant in the future.

Leave a Reply