Antitrust watchdog in India orders probe into Apple’s App Store

India’s competition watchdog on Friday ordered an investigation into Apple’s App Store business practices in the country, saying it was of the initial view that Cupertino had violated certain antitrust laws.

Apple's App Store on iPhone
Apple’s App Store on iPhone

Aditya Kalra and Abhirup Roy for Reuters:

The order from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) comes after a non-profit group alleged this year that Apple was abusing its dominant position in the apps market by forcing developers to use its proprietary in-app purchase system.

The complainant, “Together We Fight Society”, argued that Apple’s imposition of a 30% in-app fee for distribution of paid digital content and other restrictions hurts competition by raising costs for app developers and customers, while also acting as a barrier to market entry.

MacDailyNews Take: Actually, Apple charges new – or any – developers a 15% (not 30%) commission if they earned up to $1 million in proceeds during the previous calendar year.

The company denied the allegations in a filing to the CCI last month, seen by Reuters, and asked the regulator to throw out the case, stressing that its market share in India was an “insignificant” 0-5%.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple does not have a smartphone hardware or mobile operating system monopoly in India (or anywhere else), so the company cannot be abusing a monopoly. Apple does not have a dominant market position in India (far from it). And, so, the CCI’s probe is lacks foundation.

Mobile Operating System Market Share in India (December 1, 2021, Statcounter):

• Android: 95.24%
• iOS: 3.76%

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