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The battle between Spotify and Apple before the European Commission continues. Since 2019, Spotify has been pointing the finger at the Cupertino company, accusing it of unfair competition and abuse of a dominant position. The European Commission has been carrying out the investigation for many months and an initial investigation confirmed that Apple's rules “distort competition in the market for music streaming services by increasing the costs of music developers. competitor application”.
Earlier this year, the Cupertino company had to prove its good faith in front of senior representatives from Brussels. The European Commission must therefore decide and the verdict is expected in the coming weeks. So, Apple could well start 2024 with a titanic fine. Recently, the European Commission has been intransigent when it comes to unfair competition and this could well play tricks on Apple. With a sanction that would represent 10% of its annual turnover, Apple could well have to pay at least a billion euros.
What does Spotify blame Apple? ;?
If Spotify is the leader of music streaming platforms in most European countries and Apple Music does not yet have control over these markets, the Cupertino company is doing everything to push its application. For example, Spotify filed a complaint with the European Commission, explaining that Apple was preventing music streaming companies from informing users of other purchasing options outside of the App Store.
To put it simply, Apple device owners had the impression that they had to go through the App Store to subscribe to Spotify or Deezer. Except that Apple applies higher prices to benefit from the famous 30% commission on all transactions that go through its Store. As a result, Apple device users tended to choose Apple Music, which cost them less on the App Store. In reality, it is possible to subscribe to Spotify or Deezer from the platforms' websites and benefit from the “real” price. But Apple was careful not to inform its users of this.
Efforts, but not enough ?
Faced with these accusations, validated by the European Commission, Apple has made some efforts. Indeed, apps like Spotify can now include links to their sites so users can sign up and pay the real price.
However, Spotify believes that these efforts are not enough given that third-party app developers still cannot explicitly state on their app that it is possible to subscribe at a lower price on their site. Can do better, so…
So, Spotify continues to accuse Apple. Although efforts have been made, the Swedish music streaming platform claims that Apple's restrictions are still in place, even in a roundabout form, and that these efforts are in reality just a facade.
It is on this point that the European Commission must decide. While the DSA (Digital Act of Service) will come into force next March, the European Union intends to shake things up and push the web giants to review their entire operation on the Old Continent. In this sense, the European Commission could prove to be formidable intractable against Apple. The firm may well have to spend a few billion to get 2024 off to a good start.
- Since 2019, Spotify has accused Apple of unfair competition
- The European Commission has been investigating for many months
- A verdict will be rendered in early 2024 and Apple could face damages 8217;a heavy fine
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