Jon Fortt looks at Apple's 30% cut from both sides (video)

"It's not Apple's fault they made a $1,000 smartphone a lot of people prefer to the $300 alternative."

From "Should Apple cut app store fees after Musk criticism?" which aired Thursday on CNBC:

Apple's app store is in the spotlight again after Twitter's Elon Musk claimed the company takes too large a cut of transactions on the platform. Should Apple CEO Tim Cook reduce the company's app store fees? CNBC's Jon Fortt joins 'Squawk Box' with both sides of the argument.

My take: Where have I heard these arguments before?


  1. David Emery said:
    “It’s not Apple’s fault they made a $1,000 smartphone a lot of people prefer to the $300 alternative.”

    Unfortunately, both big App Factories and Eurocrats & Congresscritters think that Apple should provide its stuff for free, just because it’s that successful. In the latter case, it’s the attitude that “anyone making that much money must be cheating and it’s government’s role to punish them for their success.”

    December 2, 2022
  2. Gregg Thurman said:
    I like Jon. He asks tough, intelligent questions and comes well prepared for discussions on issues (a rarity among the media today).

    December 2, 2022
  3. Michael Goldfeder said:
    Just like shelf space at a successful retail operation such as Costco. You want access to a bazillion customers instantly? It comes with a price tag.

    December 2, 2022
  4. Fred Stein said:
    Why don’t branded soft drinks and beer complain about the ‘egregious’ mark-up in the regulated monopolies (sports franchises) for major sports in major cities? Why don’t they demand to set up their own stores in stadiums and pay ZERO access fees?

    Answer 1) They get brand exposure for free.
    Answer 2) They still make money through those venues.
    Answer 3) Everyone would laugh.

    The only case behind Musk and Epic and EU etc. is that Apple is the most successful company. There is no legal, economic, or moral case.

    December 2, 2022
    • Gregg Thurman said:
      Excellent example Fred. You could add popcorn in movie theaters to your list.

      Writing legislation that targets digital store fees is going to be nigh on impossible. A law or regulation that is so targeted that it impacts a single company would be constitutionally illegal.

      December 2, 2022
  5. Neal Guttenberg said:
    This was a very well done piece. Well worth the time to watch it. The main argument to cut prices, IMO, is regulatory pressure. Tim Cook, I think, was supposed to meet with some lawmakers and I am guessing he is talking to them about. On the other hand, right now, Apple doesn’t need to do anything. Maybe it can cut fees for struggling businesses but the question remains how do you thread the needle to find the ones truly in need.
    With this in mind, what is the state of the Fortnite lawsuit? And are there any App Developers out there that want to weigh in on this piece?

    December 2, 2022
  6. Ken Cheng said:
    I think Tesla is taking too big a cut of my Model 3. I want their margins to be smaller. Can I complain to somebody in government?

    December 2, 2022
  7. Daniel Epstein said:
    The argument about this from people complaining about the Apple cut is something like this. Anybody and everybody else who is charging me money so I can sell my product is hurting my profit not helping me make more money. I hate sharing. They don’t deserve much credit for my work. I should have the right to make money on other people’s work for less. I reserve the right to charge everyone else fees at a profitable rate. Heads I win Tails you Lose.What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine.

    December 2, 2022

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