Apple Fined $2 Billion by EU for App Store Antitrust Violations

Apple Fined $2 Billion by EU for App Store Antitrust Violations

By CE Critic - Buy Better Tech

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • EU Investigation and Fine
  • Apple's Response
  • Spotify's Response
  • How These Actions Impact Users and Developers
  • Upcoming Changes Under the Digital Markets Act
  • Conclusion


The European Union (EU) has imposed a €1.84 billion ($2 billion) fine on Apple for anticompetitive practices related to its App Store. The ruling stems from a long-standing dispute between Apple and Spotify over Apple's requirement that music streaming apps use its in-app payment system and the associated 30% commission fee.

EU Investigation and Fine

The EU's investigation concluded that Apple's App Store policies:

  • Force app developers to use Apple's in-app payment system, resulting in substantial commissions.
  • Prevent app developers from informing users about alternative subscription options outside the App Store, potentially leading to higher prices for consumers.

The EU determined these practices violate antitrust regulations and fined Apple accordingly. The fine considers the duration and severity of the violations, Apple's market dominance, and inaccurate information provided during the investigation.

Apple's Response

Apple disputes the EU's ruling, claiming:

  • The decision ignores the competitive nature of the music streaming market.
  • Spotify has benefited significantly from Apple's App Store and development tools.
  • The EU failed to find evidence of consumer harm.

Apple plans to appeal the decision.

Spotify's Response

Spotify welcomes the EU's ruling, stating:

  • Apple's practices created an unfair disadvantage for competitors.
  • Consumers were denied information about potentially cheaper subscription options.

How These Actions Impact Users and Developers

  • Users: May see increased transparency regarding subscription pricing options for music streaming services.
  • Developers: Could gain greater flexibility in how they offer subscriptions and communicate with their users.

Upcoming Changes Under the Digital Markets Act

The EU's Digital Markets Act (DMA) takes effect soon, aiming to prevent unfair practices by tech giants. Apple has announced changes to comply with the DMA, including:

  • Allowing alternative app stores on iPhones within the EU.
  • Enabling developers to offer their own payment systems.

However, Apple's proposed implementation of these changes has drawn criticism from developers for potentially high fees and restrictions.


The EU's fine and the upcoming DMA represent significant shifts in the regulation of Apple's App Store. The outcome of Apple's appeal and the full impact of the DMA on developers and consumers remain to be seen. This case underscores the ongoing debate about the power and practices of major tech companies.