Canada's Competition Bureau confirmed on Thursday that it is investigating Apple's contracts with wireless carriers to determine whether they violate the country's anti-trust laws, reports CNET. The investigation is in the early stages, with the Bureau filing a court order to compel Apple to supply documents that will assist with its investigation.
Apple is being accused of including clauses in its contracts with wireless carriers that would hinder competition. No official charges have been filed against Apple, and the Bureau has yet to find evidence supporting the initial anti-competitive allegations raised by unnamed sources.
"There is no conclusion of wrongdoing by Apple Canada Inc. at this time, and no application has been filed with the Competition Tribunal or any other court to seek remedies for any alleged anticompetitive conduct," [Competition Bureau Gregg] Scott said, without identifying how the contract allegations came to the bureau's attention. "Should evidence indicate that the Competition Act has been contravened, the Commissioner will take appropriate action."
If the Competition Bureau finds evidence that Apple violated Canada's Competition Act, the Cupertino company will be asked to change its practices or face sanctions by the Competition Tribunal. In the past several years, Apple has faced similar anti-trust allegations over its iPhone distribution terms from both the European Commission and France's DGCCR.
Update: On January 6, 2017, Canada's Competition Bureau said it "did not find evidence to suggest that the Apple terms resulted in a significant effect on competition," as reported by Reuters.