UK seeks to trigger regulatory process to remove restrictions on Apple’s cloud gaming and browsing engine

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UK competition watchdog is seeking to “measure” Apple’s restrictions on Apple’s browser engine in iOS and cloud gaming via the App Store through a high-level regulatory process, UK competition announced today. organization.

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advertisement The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is generated after one year of publication Study on Apple and Google’s Mobile Ecosystem, which finds that Apple and Google have an “effective monopoly” in the mobile ecosystem that allows them to “dominate these markets” including operating systems, app stores and web browsers. “Without intervention,” the press release said, “both companies seek to maintain, and even strengthen, their control over the sector, further restricting competition and limiting incentives for innovators.” Chances are.”

The report identifies “a range of potential interventions” that could be taken to address the issues raised, but the CMA specifically called for “immediate targeted action” using its current strengths, including launching a “market research benchmark”. Asked for ways to do it. , “In mobile browser engines and cloud games.

The study expressed concern that Apple’s restrictions on alternative browser engines in iOS and iPadOS “severely limit the ability for rival browsers to differentiate themselves from Safari (for example, in features such as speed and functionality). ) and limits the incentive for Apple to invest in it. browser engine.” It also highlights that Apple’s browser engine restriction “seriously impairs the capability of web applications”, which has been described as “depriving consumers and businesses of all the benefits of this innovative technology” and that “key benefits” that Apple and Google receive from the sale of the devices, are said to be denied. Pre-installed with its own browser app.

Overall, the evidence we have seen does not suggest that the ban of WebKit is justified by security concerns. We note that Apple benefits financially from weak competition in browsers through browser engine restrictions.

Meanwhile, in a recent filing to the US National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), Google, MicrosoftYou mozilla Everyone has explicitly condemned Apple’s WebKit ban.

The CMA report also criticizes Apple’s restrictions on cloud gaming services in the App Store. “Game apps are a major source of revenue for Apple and cloud gaming could pose a real threat to Apple’s strong position in in-app distribution. By preventing this sector from growing, Apple risks depriving mobile users of all the benefits of cloud gaming. ”, stated the study.

CMA offer A market research reference seeks to determine what specific corrective actions can be taken to improve competition with respect to browser engines and cloud gaming on Apple’s platform, including requiring Apple to make substantial changes to its practices. Orders may be required. The purpose of the study of the mobile ecosystem is to serve as a basis for negotiation and implementation of orders.

Market investigation is a high-level process through which CMA can request comprehensive information from companies to draw conclusions and implement legally binding measures. Market research benchmarks are rarely used because they are resource-intensive and place a significant burden on companies, especially amid the threat of structural disinvestment and strict behavioral measures.

Separately, the CMA continues to examine the terms and conditions of Apple’s App Store in an investigation into a competition law that began in March 2021, and the UK government is giving its digital markets unit legal powers to punish companies that Don’t follow your rules. Fine

With the apparent appetite of global regulators to address requirements around issues such as App Store policies, the Apple ecosystem is increasingly under intense scrutiny from governments around the world, including the United States, Japan, South Korea, the European Union, and more. Is. Sideloading and interoperability among concerns about competition.

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