Spotify files EU antitrust complaint against Apple

“Spotify has filed a complaint with EU antitrust regulators against Apple, saying the iPhone maker unfairly limits rivals to its own Apple Music streaming service,” Philip Blenkinsop reports for Reuters.

“Spotify, which launched a year after the 2007 launch of the iPhone, said on Wednesday that Apple’s control of its App store deprived consumers of choice and rival providers of audio streaming services to the benefit of Apple Music, which began in 2015,” Blenkinsop reports. “Central to Spotify’s complaint, filed to the European Commission on Monday, is what it says is a 30 percent fee Apple charges content-based service providers to use Apple’s in-app purchase system.”

“Horacio Gutierrez, Spotify’s general counsel, said the company was pressured into using the billing system in 2014, but then was forced to raise the monthly fee of its premium service from 9.99 to 12.99 euros, just as Apple Music launched at Spotify’s initial 9.99 price,” Blenkinsop reports. “Spotify then ceased use of Apple’s IAP system, meaning Spotify customers could only upgrade to the fee-based package indirectly, such as on a laptop.”

“Voice recognition system Siri would not hook iPhone users up to Spotify and Apple declined to let Spotify launch an app on its Apple Watch, Spotify said,” Blenkinsop reports. “Spotify declined to say what economic damage it believed it had suffered.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Bottom line: Increasingly desperate Spotify — which is now losing to Apple Music in the world’s No.1 recorded music market, the United States — wants to use the platform that Apple built and maintains at great expense for free.

Samsung to preinstall Spotify on phones – March 8, 2019
Streaming services led by Apple Music account for 75 percent of the U.S. recording industry’s revenue – March 1, 2019
Apple Music now leads Spotify in the U.S., the No. 1 recorded music market – December 31, 2018


  1. Apple is squeezing the iffy Spot, Spotify, out of existence through an age-old mechanism called COMPETITION.

    If Spotify is too iffy to play the game, then frak off outta the kitchen.

  2. When you are the IT department of ONE BILLION users and you offer new services that compete with existing services you have a competitive advantage. Some may even say an unfair one.

    Look… App Store Guidelines forbid “Duplicating Functionality”. What if Apple banned Spotify on those grounds?

    Apple has access to hidden APIs. Does Spotify?

    1. Relax bro.

      Apple owns not even 10% smartphone marketshare… The smartphone market is dominated by Androids phones… What are you talking about? Oh! I see what you mean… Apple owns a premium market…

      1. That’s one way of putting it. Maybe.

        There are also technical and market barriers that make iOS a market unto itself. Same for Android.

        Apple is also competing with it’s developers and service providers. And has an advantage in so doing.

        1. As far as I remember, iTunes and music was a thing at Apple way before Spotify showed up. Remember the iPod? Apple got their Apple TV as a hobby thing way before Hulu, Roku and the like got mainstream.

          For the other apps : Keynote, Garageband and the like, Apple isn’t pushing the note. Shazam was a logical grab…

        2. They are competing now. Today.

          But since we are going down memory lane, remember Realplayer, Musicmatch, and the dozen others that predated iTunes?

          I do remember Apple using RealNetworks into oblivion though.

        3. Funny stuff apart, Spotify is actually complaining about going through the Appstore and get that 30% tax fee. Which is, indeed, pretty greedy from Apple. But, like I mentionned, 10-20% of a marketshare is far from a monopoly hence the Appstore being a market on its own… If you don’t like it, get out and concentrate on the other 80% of the market… Pffffouhahaha ah ah ah!

        4. And in Spotify’s case they do have the Android App. Their App is not their service though.

          I recently got a subscription to a newspaper directly on the newspaper’s site. Why would I enrich Apple, Google, anybody other than the entity whos good I’ buying? What entitles Apple to an exclusive and a commensurate cut on applications.

          MS has their own infrastructure to sell, why must they be compelled to use the Apple App Store to sell their iOS Apps? Why must the user be compelled to use the Apple App Store exclusively? Who owns the machine anyway?

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