BRUSSELS Nov 26 EU regulators are examining the
link between technology platform owners and application
developers, the EU's antitrust chief said, in a move that could
spell trouble for Apple and Google, leaders in
a burgeoning industry.
EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said there was
no investigation at present, but that it was possible certain
business practices between the two sides could pose
anti-competitive concerns in the future.
"Regarding apps, I cannot be explicit, but we are looking
into the way some platforms have established or are establishing
relationships with other industries, or the creation of apps or
the innovators who create apps," Almunia told a conference.
"We are analysing some areas where these issues can be
subject to future competition policy cases," he said, without
identifying any companies.
Antitrust authorities so far have not publicly expressed any
concerns about Apple's so-called application ecosystem.
But some analysts and industry commentators say its closed
'ecosystem' of software, services, content and customer support
locks in users and developers and can affect competition.
Platform operators typically take a 30 percent cut of app
and game revenues, making this a lucrative revenue source.
Other platform operators are Microsoft and Facebook