Apple hits back as EU brands it ‘gatekeeper’ in landmark move

Apple hits back as EU brands it ‘gatekeeper’ in landmark move

Apple has hit back at today’s EU announcement that the company is one of six gatekeepers in the digital space, following the first landmark designation from the European Commission under its new Digital Markets Act. 

In a press release, the European Commission stated Wednesday that it “has today designated, for the first time, six gatekeepers – Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta, Microsoft – under the Digital Markets Act (DMA). In total, 22 core platform services provided by gatekeepers have been designated. The six gatekeepers will now have six months to ensure full compliance with the DMA obligations for each of their designated core platform services.” 

(Image credit: European Commission)

Apple has been accused of being a gatekeeper with regard to its Safari browser and iOS operating system, as well as the App Store, but the EU is also going to conduct an investigation into iMessage following Apple’s assertion it doesn’t meet the 45 million monthly active user threshold. 

“We remain very concerned about the privacy and data security risks the DMA poses for our users. Our focus will be on how we mitigate these impacts and continue to deliver the very best products and services to our European customers,” the company told iMore in a statement regarding today’s announcement. 

On the impending iMessage investigation, Apple told us “iMessage is a great service that Apple users love because it provides an easy way to communicate with friends and family while offering industry-leading privacy and security protections. Consumers today have access to a wide variety of messaging apps, and often use many at once, which reflects how easy it is to switch between them. iMessage is designed and marketed for personal consumer communications, and we look forward to explaining to the commission why iMessage is outside the scope of the DMA.” The company did not address the question of how many users Apple has with regards to its iMessage platform in the EU, the magic number is 45 million. 

Surprisingly, the EC has also revealed its plans to launch an investigation ” to further assess whether Apple’s iPadOS should be designated as gatekeeper, despite not meeting the thresholds,” a move Apple is certain to push back on. 

What happens now?

The EC will hopefully decide within the next five months whether iMessage meets its gatekeeper requirements, but on Safari,

You must be logged in to post a comment Login