App Developer Sues Apple Over Poor HTML5 Support

By Gizmodo Australia on at

OK, so Apple gets sued… a lot. At this rate, you’d think people (and companies) would run out of things to take the mobile giant to court over. Nope, not a chance. The latest legal ruckus involves a developer called Nexedi, which is upset at Apple over… HTML?

Specifically, the company is despairing over Safari’s HTML5 support on iOS and macOS, which it states “is lagging behind” the competition:

The primary reason for starting this lawsuit is because we hope that it will help Apple to sooner support the latest Web and HTML5 standards on its iOS platform — the operating system used by all iPhones. Anyone running html5test (http://html5test.com/) on [their] iPhone will find out that current iOS support of HTML5 Web technologies is lagging behind other platforms.

One could argue Nexedi could come up with its own browser with HTML5 capabilities. Unfortunately, Nexedi states that if a developer tried to do this, they would be “banned from Apple’s App Store”:

We would be delighted at Nexedi to create a Web browser for iOS with better HTML5 support based on a recent version of Blink library for example. But as soon as we would publish it, it would be banned from Apple’s AppStore. Many developers have experienced this situation already. Many companies are being hurt by this situation. Some companies have already begged Apple to improve HTML5 support in iOS with little significant results.

With little recourse it seems, Nexedi decided a legal approach was the next step. And according to the company, which is based in France, the country’s laws could be on its side:

A few years ago, France passed a Law to protect small companies such as Nexedi against large companies that try to impose unbalanced contracts … [by] not allowing the publication in Apple’s AppStore of web browsers that are not based on Apple’s own Webkit raises in our opinion the same issues as if Carrefour (a company similar to Walmart) was not selling any beans but those based on Carrefour’s seeds. This may be legal in other countries but in France, it is most likely not.

Honestly, this could be the last we hear of Nexedi and its cause. But we know Europe in general is happy to chase companies like Apple, so who knows where this comparatively small grievance could lead? [Nexedi]


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