EU investigates Apple, Google and Meta over internet regulation

apple, EC, google, dmc, eu

The EU Commission (EC) has launched its first investigation into US technology companies Apple, Google and Meta Platforms for possible breaches of the Digital Market Regulation (DMA), the Commission announced today in a press release. The Regulation came into full force this month.

Commission Suspicions and Gatekeeper Designation

“The Commission suspects that the measures put in place by these access gatekeepers fall short of effective compliance with their obligations under the DMA,” the Commission wrote. The latter fulfils the role of, among other things, an antitrust authority in the EU.

Last September, the Commission designated six large internet companies as access gatekeepers, or gatekeepers, which must comply with the rules of the DMA digital standard. Five of the companies are from the United States – Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon and Meta – and the sixth is the Chinese company ByteDance, which owns the TikTok platform. Global digital firms must comply with new rules designed to better protect the business of their smaller competitors.

DMA Compliance Investigations

The European Commission is now examining whether Apple and Google are fully complying with the DMA rules, which among other things require tech companies to allow app developers to direct users to offers available outside their app stores. The Commission is concerned that the two companies are using various restrictions, including charging fees, to prevent apps from freely promoting offers.

Google is also facing an investigation for non-compliance with the DMA, which prevents tech giants from favouring their own services over those of competitors. The Commission is concerned that Google’s actions will lead to third-party services not being treated in a “fair and non-discriminatory manner” on Google’s search results page.

Apple’s Browser Accessibility and Meta’s Subscription Data

The Commission is also examining whether Apple is doing enough to allow users of its iPhones to easily change web browsers. It is also examining whether Meta’s offer, which involves having to pay a monthly fee for ad-free versions of Facebook or Instagram, continues to collect personal data about users.

Source: čtk


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