“The FTC has launched an investigation into Apple’s dealings with competing music streaming services in its App Store, according to multiple sources,” Micah Singleton reports for The Verge. “The investigation is targeting Apple’s 30 percent fee charged to subscription services who sign up new users through the App Store. This has been a major point of conflict between Apple and rival music services.”
“The FTC’s inquiries have picked up over the recent weeks, on the heels of its initial investigation into whether Apple pressured labels to kill Spotify’s free streaming tier,” Singleton reports. “Sources with direct knowledge of the matter tell The Verge that the FTC has already issued subpoenas to music streaming services as it gathers more information to determine whether Apple’s App Store rules are anticompetitive.”
“Apple’s App Store guidelines call for a 30 percent fee to be charged to any sales by a subscription service that signs up users through an iOS app and uses iAP, which is essentially every paid music streaming service,” Singleton reports. “Before Apple decided to get into the streaming game, its 30 percent tax was still a pain for music streaming services, but not a hindrance to competition, since everyone had to abide by the same rules. But now that Apple Music is available, the world’s largest company has put itself directly in the FTC’s line of fire.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Once again, hard-nosed competition is not illegal. This is business, not Kumbaya ’round the campfire.
If Spotify, Rdio, Rhapsody, Tidal and Pandora don’t like Apple’s App Store terms, they are free to market their wares to non-iOS users. Surely their “freemium” offering will be in very high demand among the skinflint set who have proven more than willing to surrender their privacy and personal date in exchange for what they erroneously think is “free.”
As myopic “analysts” like to repeatedly tell each other on CNBC, Apple’s iOS market share is dwarfed by Android, that amazing and wondrous OS that delivers not only a poor facsimile of iOS and 99% of all mobile malware, but also exceedingly profitless results for knockoff peddlers the world over. Therefore, Apple clearly does not have a monopoly in smartphones — only in brilliantphones — so there’s simply no monopoly to abuse.
Spotify and the rest of the also-rans: Go peddle your outmoded, inferior crap to the billion+ fragmandroid settlers if you don’t like Apple’s App Store terms. Knock yourselves out.
Apple Music faces antitrust scrutiny in New York, Connecticut – June 10, 2015
a href=”http://macdailynews.com/2015/05/07/rival-music-services-claim-apples-app-store-pricing-is-anticompetitive/”>Rival music services claim Apple’s App Store pricing is anticompetitive – May 7, 2015
EU regulators already probing Apple’s music streaming plans in Europe – April 2, 2015