Sen. Elizabeth Warren took shots at Apple, Google and Amazon during a speech in Washington today, claiming Silicon Valley’s big fish are making it impossible for the small fry to compete.
“The opportunity to compete must remain open for new entrants and smaller competitors,” said Warren. During her rant against Apple, the senator specifically mentioned the unfair advantages Apple Music enjoys against its competitors.
After the speech, Spotify rallied behind Warren with some Apple bashing of its own.
“Apple has long used its control of iOS to squash competition in music, driving up the prices of its competitors, inappropriately forbidding us from telling our customers about lower prices, and giving itself unfair advantages across its platform through everything from the lock screen to Siri,” Spotify’s communication director Jonathan Prince told Recode.
With the release of iOS 10, Apple is giving some money back to subscription services like Spotify by lowering its traditional 30 percent revenue cut down to 15 percent if a customer maintains a subscriber for 12 months.
But Apple is certainly still using its giant cash reserves, and its strong industry connections, to make exclusive deals that boost Apple Music, its streaming music service that has attracted half as many paid users as Spotify in just a year.
That kind of muscle makes it easy for big tech companies to dominate various industries.
“Google, Apple and Amazon have created disruptive technologies that changed the world, and … they deserve to be highly profitable and successful,” Warren said. “But the opportunity to compete must remain open for new entrants and smaller competitors that want their chance to change the world again.”
During her speech, Warren complained about how Google uses its search engine to harm rivals of its Google Plus user review feature. Amazon, meanwhile, uses its popular platform to steer customers toward books it has published to the detriment of other publishers, according to the senator.
The speech also mentioned Walmart and Comcast. However, Facebook was left off Warren’s naughty list, even though it’s doing a great job crushing the media industry.