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Home / Technology / Apple's TV streaming and news party may end with an antitrust hangover

Apple's TV streaming and news party may end with an antitrust hangover

Slick's new gadgets are usually the stars of Apples . But on Monday the company will spotlight subscriptions and services .

It is expected that a star-studded new TV service will lead the Apple event at the Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino, California. Apple is likely to introduce a News Subscription Service integrated into a redesigned Apple message, as well as a bundle that dominates and connects all services to Apple Music. Besides, it is always possible to finish the show with "one more thing".

In other words, Apple is taking on a new field of rivals ̵

1; just as two of Apple's existing competitors smell evil .

Over the past two weeks, Spotify and Kaspersky Lab have filed lawsuits with regulators alleging that Apple is stifling services that directly compete with its own. The two companies, a streaming music giant and a key element of cyber security, alleged similar allegations that Apple had abused the market power of its app store to restrict the competitors' features, promotions or prices. [194559004] Apple rejected Spotify's allegations and did not comment on Kaspersky Apple refused to comment on this article.)

These types of disputes over antitrust issues seem unpredictable and far-off but they are far away This can affect the apps and services you use every day. You could make changes to how easy you can buy services from Apple rivals and how much you pay for them. And with Apple, to expand the types of services that are already available on the corporate platforms, more of your favorite apps could be sucked in.

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The dominance of Apple has not gone unnoticed. Senator Elizabeth Warren, a presidential Democrat candidate, called for the dissolution of tech titans like Google, Facebook and, yes, Apple.

"We are really facing an existential crisis of … a new economy," said Rivka Gewirtz Little, analyst of payment strategies at IDC. "We live in a market economy where innovation can not end, but we still have not answered the issues of monetization fairly."

Another strong regulator has shown that it also attacked Apple.

Margrethe Vestager is the EU Competition Commissioner. You may know them from the billions that the EU has outlawed on Google. One day after Spotify filed his lawsuit against Apple in their office, Vestager tweeted about the "strong message" sent by the Spotify boss.

Vestager has previously acquired Apple. In 2016, her office ordered that the iPhone maker in Ireland pay nearly $ 15 billion in taxes. Prior to Spotify's complaint, Vestager said in November that preliminary investigations in her office had found that Apple was not dominant enough in some areas to justify regulatory action.

Even if these complaints are filed in Europe or Russia, action against Apple could affect customers around the world.

Did Apple want "to have two different systems in different jurisdictions?" Asked Barbara Sicalides, a cartel lawyer with Pepper Hamilton. "So the internet economy is not being built up"

Rival Team

Apple and Spotify are the two dominant forces in the world streaming music. Spotify is the largest in the world, with 96 million paying customers. Next comes Apple Music with more than 50 million subscribers.

But Apple's expected services on Monday could result in direct competition with a range of other services you use.

Netflix, Hulu, and other subscription video services will be involved in Apple's crosshairs for their $ 1 billion original J.J. Abrams, Brie Larson, Oprah Winfrey and Reese Witherspoon. By offering additional video subscriptions, Apple could address Amazon Prime Video and its channel model – even against traditional partners such as the mobile phone company AT & T, which offers a VRV bundle of niche genre streaming services.

And Apple's news service, which is expected to offer a single subscription that allows access to a range of magazines and newspapers, would mean that Apple would oppose any subscription-based publisher that does not participate in Apple's bundle to compete for membership dollars.

Do not expect to read the New York Times there, for one thing: The newspaper's CEO said he was "suspicious" of the concept.

One of his concerns about not giving up part of the Times 15-month subscription for $ 15 a month is reflected in one of Spotify's main accusations of how Apple piles the deck against its competitors: the 30 percent Fee of the App Store.

Apple's Bite

It's something that complains about many services. For every digital product or service sold in an iOS app, Apple costs 30 percent. That is, whenever Spotify registers a new $ 10 / month premium member in their iPhone app, Apple will pay $ 3. This fee drops to 15 percent if a subscription lasts longer than a year.

Spotify says Apple has an unfair price advantage as Apple Music does not face the same tax: Spotify has to choose to charge iPhone customers $ 3 more or earn 30% less than the biggest competitor for any iOS Member.

Google's Android mobile system has a strong market, Google Play, and has similar charges as well. However, services can publish apps for Android outside of Google's market – so-called sideloading – rather than Apple. Epic Games does that with Fortnite which is why the hugely popular game is available on the App Store, but not on Google Play. Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic, has described Apple's allegations as "parasitic loss."

Sweeney said in a statement to CNET that Epic would happily distribute Fortnite directly to customers on iOS, but current Apple conditions are preventing developers from doing so. Epic is calling for Apple's policy to be changed to enable competition between stores and software sources.

But Apple's response to Spotify's appeal underscores a troubled point if you are a fan of these competing services. "Spotify would be without that App Store ecosystem is not the business they are today, "Apple said," and wants to avoid contributing to maintaining this ecosystem for the next generation of app entrepreneurs. "

Part of that is undeniable: Spotify would be without the App Store gateway did not have access to 900 million active iPhones, and Spotify's appeal to Apple was simply to stop selling in-app subscriptions While still aiming for the Spotify offering, it may not be an option to disable the App Store.

Update Lockdown

Spotify's second appeal last week, which was confirmed by Kaspersky's claim Wednesday, may also unsettle fans of Apple's future rivals. Both claim that Apple withholds their app updates in order to mitigate the competitive advantage of the competitor – by using the App Store guidelines for crimping features or preventing you from knowing about bargains.

Spotify claims that Apple had the opportunity to kneel a rival as of 2016, while Apple Music went up and Apple rejected Spotify's app updates. Last year, for example, Apple rejected the app because the word "free" was included in the Appify screenshots of the app in the App Store.

According to Kaspersky, Apple banned after iOS introduced its own parental controls, a kind of coding that offers the apps of the competitors similar functions. The company said Kaspersky Safe Kids had been on the App Store for almost three years without incident until the iOS 12 update last year made Apple itself a rival.

Apple has dismissed Spotify's claim. "We only requested customizations when Spotify tried to go around the same rules as any other app," he said. On Kaspersky's allegation Apple has not responded.

"There is a degree of protection and lockout that Apple has been working on for a long time," said Little . "There are no other apps for the damn thing."

This could pose challenges for video and news apps on your iPhone. And maybe others, depending on what Apple has in store with "one more thing".

Originally published on March 23 at 5 pm PT.
Updated March 24 at 12:07 pm PT and 5 pm PT : Adds a quote from Epic CEO and context to Vestager.

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