The European Union would file new charges against Apple in the investigation that began in 2019 following a complaint by Spotify. According to Reutersthey would be announced in the coming weeks and would highlight the increased regulatory scrutiny against the Cupertino company.
The aforementioned report does not mention what would be the new accusations that Europe would raise against those of the block. It only indicates that they would be included in a “supplemental objection statement,” which is used when new evidence is available or some elements are changed to support a case.
This would add more pages to the already extensive (and conflicting) relationship between Apple and the music and podcast streaming platform. Let us remember that the first darts between the two date back to mid-2016, when Spotify accused Californians of favoring Apple Music by imposing the use of the App Store subscription system on its competitors.
The back and forth between the two companies led the Swedes to file a formal complaint with the European Commission in 2019. This led to an investigation that in 2021 launched an accusation of abuse of power against the company led by Tim Cook. For now, neither Apple nor European regulators have made public statements regarding the apparent new accusations that would be known in the coming weeks.
The dispute between Apple and Spotify would add a new chapter
Spotify’s criticism of Apple for the obligation to use the subscription system of the App Store are not new, clearly. However, pressure is growing on the US company for you to start relaxing your policies around your online store. Thus, for example, those of the apple recently received their tenth fine in the Netherlands for preventing dating apps from using third-party payment methods.
And let’s not forget that the Digital Markets Law aims to end the modality adopted by companies like Apple with its platforms and services. Under European law, mainstream app stores will no longer be able to remove apps that claim to implement alternative payment gateways.
This would not only impact the aforementioned conflict between Apple and Spotify, but also the well-known case of Epic Games and Fortnite. However, there is still plenty of time for the regulations to come into force; some analysts believe that only from 2023 some changes related to it could begin to be seen.
More pressure on those from Cupertino
South Korea and Japan are other countries that have taken measures so that Apple – like Google – does not limit developers. In fact, at the end of March it was known that those from Cupertino already allow some apps (such as Netflix or Spotify itself) link to external sites so that users can register and manage their accounts.
This measure had been announced last year, but by then Spotify had not been entirely satisfied with its scope. “This is a step in the right direction, but it doesn’t solve the problem. Developers want clear and fair rules that apply to all apps. Our goal is to restore competition once and for all, not some arbitrary, self-serving step to time. We will continue to push for a real solution,” said Daniel Ek, CEO of the streaming service.
And to all this we must add that Google has decided to allow alternative payment methods in the Play Store, starting with Spotify. Will this decision have influenced the new charges that the European Union would present against Apple? In the coming weeks we will have more details.