A United States appeals court agreed with a lower court’s ruling that Apple’s App Store does not break U.S. antitrust law. This is a victory for Apple’s efforts to keep the government from changing the way the App Store runs.
A different ruling from the courts could have resulted in Apple be forced to modify iOS so the iPhone supports sideloading and/or rival software stores.
The U.S. Department of Justice reportedly moved closer to filing an antitrust lawsuit against Apple. The DOJ has investigated the iPhone-maker over the past several years and begun to actually write a potential suit.
The government agency has looked into many aspects of Apple’s business and there’s no clear word on whether the complaint will be about the App Store or something else.
The government of Japan said it’s considering new regulations to ensure fair app store competition amid the dominance of companies like Apple and Google. In response, Apple insisted its practices do not limit competitors.
The European Union may force Apple to make big changes to its App Store as well as services like FaceTime and Messages, if a leaked version of an EU antitrust proposal becomes law.
The draft is said to be the “final version” of the Digital Markets Act, provisionally approved by EU regulators in March. It seeks to restrict how tech giants operate in order to foster greater competition.
Add Russia to the list of countries investigating the App Store. It is reportedly looking into whether Apple’s policy forbidding iPhone developers from telling customers about alternate — and possibly cheaper — payment options is a violation of its antitrust laws.
The U.S. and other countries are asking that same question.
The United Kingdom is developing new antitrust measures and could fine tech giants up to 10% of their annual revenue for breaking the rules. The Digital Markets Unit’s plan is intended to make it easier for U.K. businesses — such as startups, news publishers and advertisers — to compete with established giants like Apple and Amazon.
“Tech has transformed our lives for the better, whether it’s helping us to stay in touch with our loved ones, share content, or access the latest news,” said Kwasi Kwarteng, the U.K.’s secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy, in a press release Tuesday. “Nobody wants to see an unassailable monopoly, and our common sense reforms will help protect consumers, support ground-breaking new ideas and level the playing field for businesses.”
A House committee approved antitrust legislation Thursday that threatens many big tech companies — Apple included. In a 24 to 20 vote early this morning, the committee approved the American Choice and Innovation Online Act.
The bill, which still needs to pass the full House, seeks to stop big platforms from advantaging their own products or services over those made by others. That could affect Apple, which not only owns and operates the App Store distribution platform, but also makes products that compete with some of the apps distributed through said store.
Apple thinks five pieces of antitrust reform legislation could undermine innovation and competition in tech, as well as creating a “race to the bottom” for security and privacy. Apple laid out its concerns in a letter sent ahead of Wednesday’s meeting of the House Judiciary Committee to discuss the proposed laws.
The letter — sent to chairmen Jerrold Nadler and David Cicilline, and ranking members Jim Jordan and Ken Buck — lays out Apple’s arguments for why the government needs to reconsider the five bills.