Apple has some fairly oppressive policies that infringe on developer freedoms around how we develop our apps, and censoring the contents of our apps.
We made the decision to abandon the Mac App Store after Apple repeatedly rejected updates containing bug fixes and continued to hold up these updates despite proving we are in full compliance of the developer guidelines.
tldr; Apples role as the App Store gate keeper limits YOUR choice on YOUR device.
Why are Apple rejecting updates?
Simple...they want to force developers to use their payment system so they can take a 30% commission.
We are not allowed to mention this of course, and there is certainly no line item on the invoice that shows you that Apple received 30% of your money.
What's the alternative?
Direct download means you, the consumer, has complete freedom over what to install on your device.
This approach also creates a free market for payment processing where the market sets the price, not Apple.
Why is direct download better?
1. We can continue offering our service at the same great price! Being forced to comply with Apples rules would require us to significantly raise our prices to account for Apples 30% commission, and increased complexity of our billing system.
2. We can deliver bug fixes in 30 minutes rather than 1-5 days.
3. Better support! We are able to offer best in class support on the spot rather than having to defer billing questions to Apple.
4. Better all around experience as we can develop with total creative freedom, rather than having to dance around Apples App Store rules.
In late 2021, Apple was found in breach of California law and their app store policies were described as "antitrust conduct is the result, in part, of the antisteering policies which Apple has enforced to harm competition".
This ruling required Apple to change App Store policies by December 9th, however on December 8th Apple was granted a stay which will unfortunately kick this can down the road allowing Apple to continue their monopolistic ways for years to come.