Apple ‘Surprised’ by Developer Concerns Over App Store Review Process

Apple continues to stand behind its app review process as it’s probed by the Australian government.

According to a new report from MacRumors, Apple has told the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) that is “surprised” to hear that developers have legitimate concerns about their ability to engage with the Cupertino-based giant in the app review process.

“Apple is surprised to hear that developers have legitimate concerns about their ability to engage with Apple in the app review process, in circumstances where the purpose of app review is to ensure the quality of apps on the App Store and Apple invests significant time and resources in engaging with developers directly to work together to achieve that shared goal,” says the company in a submission.

“Apple would therefore like to provide further information to the Commission to assist it in assessing the veracity of the concerns raised by developers in their submissions.”

The submission then summarizes the “human-led process of reviewing apps submitted to the App Store.” It says that the process is “to ensure they are reliable, perform as expected, respect user privacy, and are free of objectionable content.”

“Apple reviews 73% of prospective apps within 24 hours of being submitted by a developer,” the Cupertino company continued.

The app store practices of Apple and Google are under the microscope by the ACCC as part of its digital platforms probe.

Currently, app developers are not able to publish and distribute an app on an Apple mobile device without using the Apple App Store. Developers who offer “in-app” features, add-ons, or upgrades are required to use Apple’s payment system, rather than an alternative system.

Apple also charges a commission of up to 30 percent to developers on the value of these transactions or any time a consumer buys their app. The company did reduce this in November for some under the App Store Small Business Program, which slices commission in half to 15 percent.