Apple South Korea head resigns amidst App Store payments scrutiny

"Industry sources said Yoon's resignation is sudden and unexpected"

What you need to know

  • Apple's South Korea general manager has reportedly departed.
  • Brandon Yoon appears to have tendered his resignation suddenly and unexpectedly.
  • Sources have speculated it could be due to the in-app payments dispute in the country.

Reports indicate that Apple's general manager for South Korea Brandon Yoon has tendered his resignation suddenly and unexpectedly, possibly because of ongoing in-app payment issues in the country.

From The Korea Herald:

Apple Korea's general manager Brandon Yoon will resign from his position, industry sources said Thursday.

According to the sources, Yoon tendered his resignation from the position at the company on Thursday. The company refrained from offering a confirmation.

According to the report, the sources note that "Yoon's resignation is sudden and unexpected" given the recent positive response to the launch of the iPhone 13, Apple's new best iPhone, in the country. The report further states that there is speculation "that Yoon's resignation could be partly due to the unresolved dispute between the company and the South Korean government over the company's in-app purchasing system."

Apple and Google will be forced by new laws in the country to allow alternative in-app purchases in apps on the App Store. Google this week unveiled its plan to let developers offer alternatives whilst taking a slightly reduced rate of commission. Apple has reportedly told South Korea that it already complies with these laws, however, they were designed specifically to break open Apple's current policy, with one official commenting that Apple's response was not in keeping with the purpose of the laws. As the Herald notes:

The state-led commission, however, dismissed Apple Korea's argument and demanded the company come up with an alternative plan.

Brandon Yoon's Linkedin still lists him as an Apple employee at this time. Prior to joining Apple in April 2018, he worked at Samsung and Microsoft.