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Why is Apple facing a 500 million euro fine in Europe?

The European Commission, the executive body of the EU, will impose the sanction after a long investigation.

Why is Apple facing a 500 million euro fine in Europe?
Chema Carvajal Sarabia

Chema Carvajal Sarabia

  • Updated:

Following a complaint from Spotify in 2019, the EU has been investigating Apple’s position in the music streaming app market.

Apple Music DOWNLOAD

The EU has reduced its initial (unmanageable) investigation to focus on certain restrictions imposed on app developers by Apple.

These restrictions prevent developers like Spotify from informing iPhone and iPad users about cheaper music subscriptions that are available outside the App Store. Spotify argues that this benefits Apple Music, the rival app from the tech company.

The EU will not allow monopolistic attitudes like Apple’s

The case is the latest example of legal disputes surrounding Apple’s App Store, a key digital gateway and a source of complaints from companies that use it.

Spotify has long criticized Apple’s App Store rules, which include a 30% fee for apps and in-app purchases.

Recently, under the pressure of the EU Digital Markets Act (DMA), Apple has responded to some of these concerns by announcing that it will allow EU customers to download apps without going through their own store.

The EU declined to comment. But it indicated that it would punish Apple in February of last year, when it published a new statement of objections on the case, a formal step in which Brussels expresses its concern about the behavior of a company.

The Commission is concerned that the restrictions prevent developers from “informing consumers about where and how to subscribe to streaming services at lower prices”.

Apple Music DOWNLOAD

According to the Financial Times, the Commission will announce the fine at the beginning of next month. The maximum penalty that a company can face for anti-competitive behavior is limited to 10% of its global revenue.

In the case of Apple, this points to a potential fine of 30 billion dollars although, according to the FT, the final amount will be substantially lower. Apple will also be able to appeal any decision by the Commission.

Chema Carvajal Sarabia

Chema Carvajal Sarabia

Journalist specialized in technology, entertainment and video games. Writing about what I'm passionate about (gadgets, games and movies) allows me to stay sane and wake up with a smile on my face when the alarm clock goes off. PS: this is not true 100% of the time.

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