The EU’s antitrust investigation of Apple is looking into how Cupertino made it tough for fellow tech giants Facebook and Microsoft launching their own streaming gaming platforms on the App Store. These include the Facebook Gaming and Microsoft’s Project xCloud apps.
Facebook last week said that it had to strip gaming functionality out of its Gaming app in order to get the streaming app approved by Apple. As a result, COO Sheryl Sandberg said that iOS users are getting a considerably “inferior experience” due to Apple’s App Store policies.
Microsoft, meanwhile, said that “Apple stands alone as the only general-purpose platform to deny consumers from cloud gaming and game subscription services like Xbox Game Pass.” Its app is currently not available in the App Store.
Microsoft’s statement continued that, “[Apple] consistently treats gaming apps differently, applying more lenient rules to non-gaming apps even when they include interactive content.”
Europe antitrust investigation of Apple
Apple currently faces an EU antitrust investigation for variety of reasons. One of these include its tight controls of the App Store. This is a similar concern that has been raised in the United States. Tim Cook was recently quizzed about the subject during a Congressional antitrust hearing.
Apple has continued to argue that it has done nothing wrong. It notes that both Sony’s PlayStation Remote and Valve’s SteamLink are allowed on the App Store. However, its statement regarding Microsoft’s xCloud service said that it did not follow Apple’s guidelines. Guidelines violated include “submitting games individually for review and appearing in charts and search.”
Apple has said that it applies the same rules to all developers. But complaints about the App Store have continued. Apple currently faces antitrust cases in both the U.S. and Europe. In the past, Europe has proven more willing to crack down on what it perceives as abuses by big tech companies.