Apple set to face antitrust charges over Spotify complaint, according to reports

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Spotify filed an antitrust complaint in the EU in March 2019, alleging that Apple abused its control over the App Store

Apple is set to face antitrust charges in the European Union over a competition complaint made by Spotify about App Store rules, according to reports.

Spotify had alleged back in March 2019 that Apple abused its control over which apps appear in the App Store to restrict competition against its own Apple Music service.

EU regulators opened antitrust probes into Apple in June 2020, investigating the App Store and Apple Pay.

If reports come true and EU regulators allege that Apple AAPL abused antitrust rules, it would represent the first time the technology giant has faced such charges in the 27-member bloc, as competition concerns stack up worldwide.

European Commission regulators are set to present the charges in the coming weeks, according to a report on Mar. 4 by Reuters, which first reported the news and cited sources close to the matter. The report said that the Commission could set out Apple’s suspected violations of antitrust rules in a statement of objections before the summer.

The charges would be linked to a competition complaint made two years agoby music streaming platform Spotify SPOTover the rules on Apple’s App Store.

Spotify also said that Apple’s payment system, Apple Pay, which typically takes a 30% cut of transactions, made it difficult for Apple Music rivals to market themselves.

Antitrust charges against Apple in the EU would represent just the latest effort by European regulators to crack down on the power of Big Tech.

In the U.K., the Competition and Markets Authority said on Thursday that it was looking into Apple for suspected breaches of competition rules on the App Store, in a similar case to the one in the EU.

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