The European Commission closely monitors the behavior of technology giants to identify possible violations of EU competition rules. For example, Google has already received a record fine for distributing its services on the Android operating system.
For its part, Apple is already being accused by many companies of using the rules of the App Store to use its services to the detriment of those of third-party developers. One of the companies accusing Apple of anti-competitive practices is Spotify.
Two years ago, the European streaming giant filed a complaint with the European Commission. “In recent years, Apple has introduced rules in the App Store that deliberately limit choice and stifle innovation at the expense of the user experience – essentially both as a player and as a referee, to deliberately penalize other developer applications. After trying unsuccessfully to solve the problems directly with Apple, we are now calling on the EU to take action to ensure fair competition, ”said Daniel Ek, then Head of Spotify.
And this week the European Commission could make an announcement on the matter. This is what the financial time indicates in an article. According to FT sources, EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager could already announce the indictment against Apple this week. These sources also reportedly indicated that these allegations were related to the complaint filed by Spotify.
In June 2020 the European Commission announced the initiation of an investigation. “The European Commission has opened official antitrust investigations to determine whether Apple’s rules for app developers for distributing apps via the App Store violate EU competition rules. The surveys specifically address the compulsory use of Apple’s proprietary in-app purchase system and limitations on developers’ ability to educate iPhone and iPad users about other less-than-shopping options EG.
A win for Spotify?
For Margrethe Vestager, Apple appears to have been given a gatekeeper role in spreading apps on iOS, and it’s important to make sure these rules don’t distort competition. The Commission had therefore opened the investigation to ensure that the App Store rules did not violate EU competition rules.
It should also be noted that while the App Store and Google Play Store have similar rules, Google allows users to install third-party apps on the Android operating system. Even if an app isn’t on the Google Play Store, users can still install it by downloading an APK file.
Apple has always been very strict about its rules. However, this enforcement of the App Store rules came under scrutiny after the company decided to focus more on services and bring products to market that directly compete with those of some third-party developers.
Additionally, Apple has continued to step up its services recently. During the Spring Loaded event where the company unveiled the iPad Pro, it also announced the arrival of paid podcasts (knowing that Apple and Spotify are competitors on podcasts).
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