EU: Apple still under investigation after Spotify’s complaint

Apple will face new antitrust charges in the European Union following an investigation into Apple Music launched after a Spotify complaint.

EU, Apple Music, Spotify

As Reuters reports, the allegations are part of an ongoing investigation by the European Commission into possible anti-competitive behavior in the music streaming market and suggest the European Union is stepping up legal action against Apple in connection with growing scrutiny of big tech companies.

Spotify’s original complaint dates back to 2019, when the company filed a complaint with the European Commission claiming that Apple was only applying App Store rules to competitors and not to its own platforms. “At Apple, they deliberately limit choice and stifle innovation at the expense of user experience. Apple is acting as both a player and an arbiter to deliberately disadvantage other app developers”.

Specifically, Spotify noted that Apple’s 30% commission on “App Store” purchases, including in-app subscriptions, is forcing competing music streaming services to charge iOS users higher prices. According to Spotify, this gave Apple an unfair advantage because Apple Music didn’t and shouldn’t pay a fee. Additionally, Apple has also been accused of blocking Spotify on services and products such as Siri, HomePod, and Apple Watch: “All of this makes Apple Music a more attractive option for iOS users. »

In 2021, the European Union found Apple to be in breach of competition law, but now the Commission wants to investigate even further to enforce any additional antitrust charges. Except surprise, the additional fees will be published in the coming weeks.

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