The European Commission could charge Apple with sweeping antitrust violations as soon as this week, according to a new report in the Financial Times that cites several people with direct knowledge of the announcement.
The charges are related to the arbitrary rules that Apple enforces for developers who target its platforms, including iOS (iPhone), iPadOS (iPad), macOS (the Mac), and others. And I assume that most readers are already familiar with the laundry list of anticompetitive business practices that Apple uses to hobble third-party developers, copy their best ideas, and then promote their own copycat apps and services that do not abide by the same rules.
Apple, of course, has referred to this kind of talk as “misleading rhetoric.” But with antitrust regulators from around the globe taking its gatekeeper role seriously, there will be changes. Indeed, we’ve already seen some major proactive changes from Apple: Most app developers will no longer be charged a 30 percent vig on digital purchases thanks to complaints from Spotify and others and the resulting antitrust investigations.