Apple is a large multinational company with headquarters in the U.S. However, as the company continues to grow financially, its powers in the political scene continue to increase. Recent reports show that the company is declining the U.S. senate invitation. It has decided not to testify at the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on antitrust issues related to mobile app stores. The U.S. senate calls Apple’s behavior “unacceptable”.
Why with the company reject or ignore the U.S, senate subcommittee’s invitation? Is Apple getting bigger than the U.S. Senate? Time will eventually answer this question.
App developers have been very dissatisfied with the Apple App Store on iPhone and iPad. They are accusing the store of monopolizing by requiring certain revenue sharing and setting strict containment rules.
The subcommittee hearing is scheduled to be held at the end of April. The senator said that he even had discussions with Senate staff on who would testify on behalf of Apple. However, Apple “suddenly announced” that it would not provide witnesses to testify at all.
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The company did not provide witnesses for App Store hearings on the grounds that the court is about to try its case with Epic Games. The Senate Judiciary Committee Competition Policy, Antitrust and Consumer Rights Subcommittee did not see this as an excuse
A Democratic senator has sent a letter to Cook, urging him to reconsider the previous decision. He also clearly stated in the letter that Apple’s backlash is unacceptable.
Apple and Epic are already in court over the same issue
Apple and Epic Games are in court with regards to this issue. Since the case is already in a court of competent jurisdiction, the company is declining the Senate’s invitation. Epic Games is suing for its monopoly. The gaming company claims that the American manufacturer is abusing users and company’s rights. Developers need to use its internal App Store to publish games and need to pay transaction fees.
The Oakland District Court of California has set May this year for a hearing. In addition, both Apple and Epic Games top executives will testify in person in this case.
Apple and Epic’s witnesses for this case
- Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook
- Apple Software Senior Vice President, Craig Federighi
- App Store Vice President, Matt Fischer
- Head of Fraud Engineering Algorithms and Risk, Eric Friedman
- Director of Commerce and Payments, Eric Gray
- Game Development Manager, Mark Grimm
- Other employees in marketing, developer relations, as well as other fields
Epic Games witnesses
- Epic Games CEO, Tim Sweeney
- Employees of Epic Games
Other third-party witnesses
- plus iTunes chief Eddy Cue
- Former iOS software chief, Scott Forstall