European regulators announced formal antitrust investigations into Apple’s App Store and its Apple Pay system.
The first stems from complaints filed by Spotify and Rakuten. They claimed Apple is violating EU competition rules by requiring the use of its in-app purchase system to access music and books, and by preventing apps from informing users of cheaper ways to buy content outside the App Store.
Apple charges app developers a 30% commission on all digital content bought via its in-app system.EU officials are concerned that Apple’s practices may harm consumers by preventing them from benefiting from greater choice and lower prices.
A preliminary investigation found that Apple’s competitors have passed on its fees in the form of higher prices to customers, or disabled the in-app purchase systems altogether.
The second antitrust investigation will look into the impact of Apple’s conduct on competition in mobile payments.