Telegram founder Pavel Durov calls for legislation to make Apple allow iPhone users to install different app stores
VK social networking website and Telegram messenger App founder and developer, Pavel Durov wants Apple to let iPhone users install different App stores other than Apple App Store. Not only that, but he also wants legislation to make this happen.
Speaking at the panel discussion with Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and representatives of the IT industry in Innopolis, Telegram Manager and Vice President, Ilya Perekopsky said that Apple and Google are holding back the development of startups by charging a tax of 30 percent commission from app developers. Immediately after Perekopsky’s speech, Durov published an article in which he called for legislation mandating Apple to be legally obliged to allow users to install an alternative App Store on the iPhone. Durov says that Tim Cook, Apple CEO should be obligated to this at the legislative level.
Durov is taking the bull by its horn. Apple has been successful because of its closed technology. It not only does not allow any other App store to be installed on iPhones but it also takes action against any iPhone jailbreaks that happen. We all know that the uc0ver team released a jailbreak exploiting the previously unknown vulnerability in iOS just hours after Apple released iOS 13.5. The iPhone jailbreak was shut down in iOS 13.5.1 within days by Apple. Many private iPhone App stores exist like Cydia, Xabsi, etc but they work only on jailbroken iPhones.
Much of Apple’s profit is from selling content on its App stores. In fact, Apple’s App Store platform grossed around $50 billion for App store in 2019, according to an analysis by CNBC. Apple takes 30 percent commission from App developers to make their apps available on Apple Store. Last year it paid $35 billion to developers from the App store revenue and kept $15 billion for itself.
Durov has reasons for being mad at Apple for not allowing other App stores. Durov says that Russian startups fail to make money by paying 30% to Apple. “Preventing two supranational corporations from collecting taxes from all of humanity is not an easy task. Corporations employ thousands of lobbyists, lawyers, and PR agents, and their budgets are unlimited. At the same time, app developers are scattered and scared, as the fate of their projects depends entirely on the favor of Apple and Google,” wrote Pavel Durov.
Durov also has a personal bias for wanting Apple to open up its iOS for alternative App stores. In 2016, Apple banned the Telegram team from launching its own game platform. This hurt Durov and Telegram’s ambitions, “We had to remove the telegram games catalog that we had already created and almost the entire platform interface, otherwise Apple threatened to remove Telegram from the AppStore.”
Recently, email client, Hey.com had a similar experience with Apple regarding publishing their App on the Apple App store.