The European Commission has launched antitrust investigations into the operation of the App Store and Apple Pay, according to EC reports.
This investigation is going to focus, in particular, on the restrictions imposed by Apple in relation to companies - developers of applications. The mandatory use of Apple's proprietary in-app purchase system Apple IAP for the distribution of paid digital content has received multiple complaints. Currently, developers are charged a fee of 30% of all subscription fees through IAP.
European Commission will check restrictions that developers face in informing iPhone and iPad users about cheaper buying opportunities outside of applications. Although Apple allows users to consume content such as music, e-books, and audiobooks purchased on the developer's website, its rules do not allow developers to inform users of such purchase opportunities.
The report said that the basis for such an investigation was complaints from the Spotify music streaming service, which is a competitor to Apple Music, as well as an e-book and audiobook distributor that competes with Apple Books. The European Commission will examine the potential impact of Apple App Store practices on competition in the streaming of music and e-books and audiobooks. - "Such a practice can ultimately harm consumers because it does not allow them to take advantage of a wider choice and lower prices".
EC Vice President Margret Westagher, responsible for competition policy has commented on the issue with the following statement- "Apple seems to have gotten the gatekeeper role when it comes to distributing apps and content for users of popular Apple devices. We must ensure that Apple rules do not distort competition in markets where Apple competes with other application developers. For example, with its streaming service Apple Music or with Apple Books. Therefore, I decided to carefully study the rules of the Apple App Store and their compliance with EU competition rules".