Apple to appeal EU fine, calls Spotify the main beneficiary of antitrust ruling

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Key notes

  • Apple strongly denies restricting competition and argues that Spotify has benefited significantly from the App Store platform.
spotify

Tech giant Apple announced today that it will appeal a decision by the European Commission (EC) to fine the company over alleged anti-competitive practices in the EU’s digital music market. Released earlier today, the EC ruling sides primarily with Spotify, the world’s largest music streaming service. Apple, in a strongly worded press release, calls the decision flawed and asserts that Spotify holds a dominant market share.

Apple Accuses Spotify of Seeking Unfair Advantage

Apple strongly denies restricting competition and argues that Spotify has benefited significantly from the App Store platform. Apple claims that Spotify pays nothing to use the App Store, despite massive growth on the platform that has propelled the company to a 56% EU market share in music streaming – double its nearest competitor.

The tech giant further accuses Spotify of seeking to rewrite existing App Store rules to favor the music streaming company. Apple says Spotify could easily link to its web signup for accounts and subscriptions, as many ‘reader’ apps already do. Instead, Spotify wants to embed pricing details and avoid Apple’s In-App Purchase system, Apple claims.

EU Antitrust Ruling Misguided, Says Apple

The Cupertino-based company criticizes the Commission’s decision, claiming it lacks evidence of either anti-competitive practices or harm to consumers. Apple argues that the digital music market has rapidly expanded thanks, in part, to the App Store, and that Spotify has been a major beneficiary. The company contends the EC’s ruling does nothing to foster competition and, instead, solidifies Spotify’s market dominance.

“Apple has been a part of Europe for over 40 years, and today, we support more than 2.5 million jobs across the continent. We’ve helped markets thrive, promoting competition and innovation at every turn — and the App Store is an important part of that story. So while we respect the European Commission, the facts simply don’t support this decision. And as a result, Apple will appeal,” Apple wrote in a press release.

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