Apple and Google to be subject to EU digital law investigations

Apple and Google to be subject to EU digital law investigations

Apple Inc. and Alphabet Inc.'s Google are about to face full-blown European Union investigations into their compliance with a new law that curbs the power of Big Tech.paving the way for potentially large fines.

The European Commission is preparing to announce in the coming days iinvestigations into companies under the bloc's Digital Markets Lawaccording to people familiar with the matter.

Apple and Google's new fees, terms and conditions for app store developers will be in the EU's spotlightsaid the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

A proposal from Meta Platforms Inc. to charge users a monthly fee to access Facebook and Instagram without ads It could also be examined by the EU within the framework of the bloc's new powers, these people added.

The EU's intensified scrutiny of Apple comes as the The US Department of Justice and 16 attorneys general sued the company on Thursday, accusing the iPhone maker of violating antitrust laws. by blocking rivals from accessing the hardware and software features of their popular devices.

Apple shares fell as much as 3.8% in Thursday trading, while Alphabet shares fell as much as 1.2%.

The DMA, which sets a series of rules for some of the world's largest technology platforms, allows the bloc to impose heavy penalties of up to 10% of a company's total annual revenue worldwide, and up to 20% for companies that repeatedly fail to comply with the rules. After launching formal investigations, regulators aim to make their final decisions within 12 months.

The Brussels Commission and Meta declined to comment. Apple and Google did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Apple, which has just been fined 1.8 billion euros ($2 billion) by the EU for preventing music streaming apps from informing users of cheaper dealshas been under intense scrutiny since the DMA came into full effect on March 7.

Spotify, which triggered the EU's initial complaint over the App Store, said the DMA's proposals Manzana of imposing additional charges on developers were “unacceptable” and “nonsense” and requested a meeting with EU Competition Chief Margrethe Vestager. Apple had proposed eliminating the 30% commission it has historically imposed, but also adding new charges.