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Elon Musk ready to ‘go to war’ with Apple over Twitter dispute

    Elon Musk ready to 'go to war' with Apple over Twitter dispute

    Twitter’s new owner decided to pick a fight with Apple on Monday, posting a series of tweets criticizing the tech company and claiming he would go to war with the iPhone maker.

    It appears that Musk’s feud with Apple was sparked by a dispute over the future of the Twitter app. Elon Musk alleged in a tweet that Apple is planning to withdraw Twitter from the App Store.

    It is currently unclear whether there are actual plans by Apple to do so, although Elon Musk has previously addressed the possibility of this issue. Elon Musk claimed over the weekend that he would consider making his own smartphone if Apple took action against the Twitter app.

    Apple previously removed the app from the App Store due to content that did not comply with company policies. The most similar example was when Apple removed the right-wing social media platform Parler from its App Store shortly after the events of January 6, when pro-Trump mobs stormed the Capitol Building.

    Parlor’s lax content moderation policies quickly made headlines, showing just how much hate and violent rhetoric is allowed on the platform. Both Apple and Google bootlegged the app from their respective App Stores at the time. Given Musk’s current direction for Twitter, it appears he believes the app will suffer the same fate.

    Researchers have observed an increase in hate speech on Twitter since Musk took office and reinstated several previously banned accounts such as Donald Trump.

    Elon Musk reportedly began his Apple-related tweets by first calling out the company for not advertising on Twitter. Apple has mostly stopped advertising on Twitter. Do they hate free speech in America? Elon Musk also tweeted a followup tagging Apple CEO Tim Cook. “What’s going on here @tim_cook?”

    If Apple has stopped advertising on Twitter it certainly isn’t alone. A new report found that half of Twitter’s largest advertisers have stopped spending money on advertising campaigns on the platform due to various concerns regarding brand safety. Musk himself acknowledged the runaway advertisers shortly after taking office.

    In his Twitter rant, Elon Musk highlighted some of the responses to users who shared issues with his app’s inclusion in the App Store over content concerns. Who else has Apple censored? Musk tweeted before sharing a parody video made by Fortnite developer Epic Games after the company had its own battle with Apple over App Store policy in 2020.

    The Fortnite maker’s 2020 dispute with Apple was over the iPhone maker’s 30 percent revenue cut for all in-app purchases, a significant amount for Epic Games, which reportedly brought in more than $1 billion on iOS went. A workaround for users to bypass Apple’s cut, which resulted in Apple removing Fortnite from the App Store, has since caused the widely popular game to no longer appear in the App Store.

    Elon Musk should note that Epic Games can afford to play hardball with Apple because about 7 percent of Fortnite’s revenue came from iOS. Twitter is heavily dependent on Apple. About 80 percent of Twitter users access the platform through their mobile devices. US Apple dominates the smartphone sector with more than 50 percent of the total market share.

    Also when Twitter’s paid subscription plan was Twitter Blue Live it was only available for iOS users. Elon Musk then decided to move on from battling Apple over its stalled Twitter ad campaigns and App Store content policies and instead focused on that secretive 30 percent App Store revenue cut.

    Did you know that Apple charges a 30% secret tax on everything you buy through their App Store? Musk asked about Apple’s much-publicized revenue sharing deal with its developers. Some Twitter users responded by showing Musk videos and screenshots of then-Apple CEO Steve Jobs announcing the App Store revenue split at a public Apple iPhone event in 2008.

    It seems unlikely that Musk will be able to change Apple’s mind on the 30 percent commission again. If Fortnite’s billions can’t do it, 150,000 Twitter users can pay $8 for Twitter Blue via iOS in-app purchase. Won’t do the trick. Regardless of how Musk has run Twitter since he acquired the company and took it private last month, going public to war with Apple is likely to be a losing battle.

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