Spotify Hits Apple With Antitrust Complaint in Europe Over App Store

Spotify files antitrust complaint to Brussels against Apple

Apple's 30% app store commission unfair, Spotify claims

Apple, valued at $855 billion, makes most of its... The upshot is that if you pay $9.99 through iTunes for your Spotify account, Spotify has to give $3 of that to Apple. Spotify had 96 million paying subscribers at the last count in February, while Apple Music reportedly had 56 million subscribers at the end of 2018.

Invisible to the customer is the fee apple takes when purchasing in the app store or a subscription within an app.

The Swedish firm has since removed the option to subscribe on iOS.

Since direct appeals proved unfruitful, Spotify has filed an official complaint with the EC, an entity notoriously tough on big tech.

Spotify says that Apple's hefty cut of App Store revenues, which forces many developers to increase prices, is unfair.

The Verge reports that music streaming service Spotify has filed an antitrust complaint against tech giant Apple with the European Union related to the 30 percent cut that Apple takes from subscriptions made via their app store.

Spotify wasn't looking for special treatment, but "we should all be subject to the same fair set of rules and restrictions - including Apple Music", Ek said.

Ek says the company had tried - and failed - to resolve these issues with Apple before filing a complaint to the EC.

Of course, Spotify is not the only one who has been burned by Apple's practices. That would have earned Apple approximately $6.6 million. Even when the HomePod launched, there was no support for services like Spotify. Apple charges the fee to all subscription apps that bill via the App Store.

Fortnite, the hit title from Epic Games, charges players $7.99 for 1,000 V-Bucks (its in-game currency) on console and PC. "This is how we convert our free customers to premium", Gutierrez said.

Spotify wants all apps to be treated fairly.

In addition to taking issue with those rules, Spotify alleges it has been the subject of unfair treatment.

Second, consumers should have a real choice of payment systems, and not be "locked in" or forced to use systems with discriminatory tariffs such as Apple's.

Under App store rules, Spotify said, content-based apps could not include buttons or external links to pages with production information, discounts or promotions and faced difficulties fixing bugs.

Apple hasn't as of the time of this writing responded to requests for comments about Spotify's action, while a spokesperson for the European Commission told The Wall Street Journal that Spotify's complaint has been received and is being reviewed.

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