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ACM launches market study into mobile app stores

The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) wants to understand better how app providers get their apps in app stores, as well as what influence app stores have on the selection of apps from which end-users can choose. That is why ACM has launched a market study into the relationship between app providers and mobile app stores. The digital economy is one of the key priorities on ACM’s agenda this year. The market study into app stores is a part of this.

The reasons for this study

The market for smartphones and apps has evolved into a mature market over the past few years. A considerable amount of internet traffic now goes through apps. The two largest mobile platforms, Android and iOS, have attained strong positions, and the selections of apps in their app stores are extensive. It is important for app providers that their apps can be found in these app stores, so that as many people as possible are able to use the apps. If companies are unable to reach end-users through their smartphone apps, then these companies are potentially harmed in their abilities to offer their services effectively. The interests of app stores do not always align with those of the companies providing the apps, because the app store owners often offer apps themselves, too. ACM will study how app stores operate in the approval and selection processes of apps (their own apps and third-party apps) for including them in their stores, and what influence this process has on the final selection of apps on offer.  

ACM will gather more information

In order to get an as complete as possible picture of how mobile app stores function, ACM over the next few weeks will sit down with various Dutch and European experts in app development, as well as with scientists, other regulators, app providers and other media companies. Do you have any information on this subject and would you like to help us in our study? Please contact us.