If you visit the Mac App Store or iOS App Store now, you would notice something different. Listed apps are no longer calling themselves “Free” anymore, instead the download buttons now read “Get.” First spotted by TechCrunch, Apple has likely made the move to comply with recent EU ruling. Also Read - Apple adds UPI, RuPay, net banking on App Store: How to add new payment methods
Earlier this year, EU commission ordered Google to change the label of the ‘Top Free Apps’ to read “Top Apps” and make the same changes at other similar places. The ruling was made to ensure that consumers were not misled by “Free” label, as those apps often offer in-app purchases. At that time, Apple had assured that it would be making some changes to its stores soon. The commission found that children were easily misled by the free label, and they often asked their parents to pay to cover for all the in-app purchases. Also Read - Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' job application sold for over Rs 2.5 crore
Over the years, the company has received a great deal of flack from customers as well as consumer protection groups over how it markets its apps. Apple also had to face a lawsuit last year which made the company add “offers in-app purchases” labels to the freemium apps that were free to download, but asked for money for additional features or advancements. Also Read - Apple iOS 15, iPadOS 15 beta 4 released: What’s new, how to download
Apple has since made several changes to the App Store to make them more transparent. In addition to putting the “in-app purchases” labels wherever applicable, the company also maintains a ‘Kids Section’ on the App Store where it only offers select apps for children younger than 13.
Unlike Google, Apple has made the changes applicable in all the countries. Interestingly enough, Apple still marks its own apps as “Free.” The company is also yet to change the top section labels, which still read “Top Free iPhone Apps.”