EU to charge Apple over anti-competitive practices relating to Apple Pay

“The EU competition enforcer is now drafting a so-called statement of objections setting out its concerns which is expected to be sent to Apple next year”

What you need to know

  • The EU is investigating Apple over Apple Pay and alleged anti-competitive practices.
  • A new report claims the bloc is set to charge Apple.
  • It will set out objections in a statement to be sent to Apple next year.

A new report indicates an EU investigation into Apple Pay on devices like the iPhone 13 will see Apple charged with anti-competitive practices.

From Reuters:

EU antitrust regulators are set to charge Apple with anti-competitive practices related to its NFC chip technology, people familiar with the matter said, a move that could force the iPhone maker to open up its mobile payment system to rivals.

The EU is reportedly drafting a statement of objections that will be sent to Apple next year.

The EU announced a formal investigation into both Apple Pay and the App Store last year, from that report:

The EU has announced a formal investigation into possible antitrust practices carried out by Apple, with regards to both Apple Pay and the App Store.

In a press release the European Commission stated:

The European Commission has opened a formal antitrust investigation to assess whether Apple’s conduct in connection with Apple Pay violates EU competition rules. The investigation concerns Apple’s terms, conditions and other measures for integrating Apple Pay in merchant apps and websites on iPhones and iPads, Apple’s limitation of access to the Near Field Communication (NFC) functionality (“tap and go”) on iPhones for payments in stores, and alleged refusals of access to Apple Pay.

At the time EU competition chief Margrethe Vestager said “it appears that Apple sets the conditions on how Apple Pay should be used in merchants’ apps and websites. It also reserves the “tap and go” functionality of iPhones to Apple Pay. It is important that Apple’s measures do not deny consumers the benefits of new payment technologies, including better choice, quality, innovation, and competitive prices. I have therefore decided to take a close look at Apple’s practices regarding Apple Pay and their impact on competition.”

At the time Apple described the move as “disappointing” and claimed the EU was “advancing baseless complaints from a handful of companies who simply want a free ride, and don’t want to play by the same rules as everyone else.” Apple said it wanted to “maintain a level playing field where anyone with determination and a great idea can succeed.”

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