Apple is now facing a fight on two fronts. First, Epic Games had sued Apple for removing Fortnite from the App Store. Now, WordPress is hitting Apple for locking out updates to the free iOS app. WordPress says that Apple won’t let them update the app or fix bugs until they support in-app purchases for WordPress.com plans. If they accept, Apple will receive a cut of the money.
Since the issue went viral, though, Apple has since backpedaled. The company won’t force WordPress to install in-app purchases on mobile.
Apple vs. WordPress
WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg tweeted out his sentiments on the App Store. However, Mullenweg said they were not going to break the App Store rules. Currently, the app doesn’t let users buy WordPress.com plans on the app. WordPress had also blocked users from getting to the web app from mobile. However, Apple did not think it was enough.
Heads up on why @WordPressiOS updates have been absent… we were locked by App Store. To be able to ship updates and bug fixes again we had to commit to support in-app purchases for .com plans. I know why this is problematic, open to suggestions. Allow others IAP? New name?
— Matt Mullenweg (@photomatt) August 21, 2020
The issue didn’t show Apple in a good light. Users have hit Apple for their move on WordPress. In a rare statement, Apple apologized. Gizmodo reports receiving Apple’s announcement by email. The company said that WordPress is now a “free stand-alone app.”
Apple is already facing a legal battle with Epic Games, which is doing a number on their PR.
Is Apple in Trouble?
Apple’s battle with Epic Games is part of the ongoing debates on Apple’s antitrust issues. Since it dominates the market, it could impose its will on developers, and they can’t do anything about it. Apple could also lock out developers and users if they cross the software giant.