According to reports, the EU Antitrust Commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, will file antitrust charges against Apple later this week. The commission has reasons to believe that the rules set by the Apple App Store for developers violate EU law. The case began two years ago, when the Swedish music streaming service giant, Spotify filed a complaint with the European Union against Apple. Spotify accuses Apple of charging it a 30% subscription fee in exchange for the Spotify application on the App Store. In addition, Apple also refuses to let users know about cheaper access (Spotify) methods outside of its ecosystem.
This case is one of many cases against Apple. It is also one of the most high-profile antitrust cases against US technology companies in the European Union. Inside sources claim that the European Commission plans to file antitrust charges against Apple later this week. However, the commission may also postpone its plans.
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Spotify filed a complaint with the European Union against Apple in March 2019. In June of that year, the European Commission launched an investigation. Vestager said at the time that Apple seemed to have become a “gatekeeper” in distributing apps and content to iOS device users.
We made Spotify what it is today – Apple
With respect to these recent rumors, Apple does not have any official statement. However, Apple said in time past that the App Store made Spotify what it is today and has become a public company. It believes that Spotify only wants to benefit from the App Store but does not want to make any contribution.
As for the 30% share of Spotify complaints, Apple responded that for free apps, Apple does not charge a distribution fee. It claims that it only charges 30% for paid subscriptions on the platform. Moreover, if the subscription exceeds one year, the ratio will reduce to 15%.
However, Spotify believes that Apple treats competitors unfairly and aims to promote its own music streaming service. Spotify claims that Apple’s control of its App Store has not only deprived consumers of choice but also deprived other streaming music service providers of the rights. Apple did this entirely to serve its own streaming music service, Apple Music.
Spotify also said that Apple’s voice recognition system, Siri, will not connect iPhone users with Spotify. Furthermore, Apple also refuses to let Spotify launch apps on its Apple Watch.