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New UK bill aims to make big tech play nice with third-party app stores

The new DMCC Bill wants to stop companies like Google and Apple from playing favorites on their own stores and make sure they act in users' best interests.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

May 23, 2024

1 Min Read
Logo for the iOS App Store.
Image via Apple.

A new bill has been passed by the UK Parliament which may put third-party stores on equal footing with bigger digital storefronts.

As reported by the Press Gazette, the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill (DMCC) was pushed through ahead of Parliament's dissolution in July. Under it, tech platforms are prohibited from treating its own products more favorably or "applying discriminatory terms, conditions, and policies" on specific users.

In other words, UK iOS users would be allowed to see a Fortnite or a hypothetical PlayStation mobile store feature prominently on Apple's platform.

Fortnite on iOS was part of the storm

Months ago, Apple came under fire after it deleted Epic Games' UK account. It was done ahead of Fortnite's return to iOS in the region and was later reinstated.

Earlier this year, the UK's Digital Markets Act (DMA) made it so Apple had to allow third-party stores on iOS. The DMCC helps curb any other possible attempts at downplaying those storefronts, be it from Epic or another tech company like Microsoft.

Other perks of the bill include "effective processes" for complaints or disputes by current and future users, and giving clear explanations (with "reasonable notice") to users about "relevant digital activity" before material changes take place.

Labour frontbencher Baroness Jones called the bill "long overdue, [and it] take the first steps on regulating the behavior of the big tech companies."

More insight on the DMCC bill and its full scope can be read here.

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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