European Commission 'Concerned' About Apple's Streaming Music Plans

European regulators are scrutinizing Apple's discussions with record labels for its much-rumored streaming music service, according to Financial Times. The report claims the European Commission has contacted several labels and digital music companies to request information about their agreements with Apple, although these actions do not guarantee it will launch a formal antitrust investigation.

beats-music-app-ios
The report, citing people familiar with the matter, claims that the European Commission is "concerned" that Apple will use its size and influence to persuade the music groups to abandon free, ad-supported services such as Spotify. Apple has nearly 1 billion iTunes users, and the company could face hefty fines and be required to change its business practises if committed of wrongdoing.

Apple is expected to launch a revamped streaming music service at WWDC in June, although it will reportedly not offer a free, ad-supported streaming option like Spotify and some other competitors offer. The service will reportedly be deeply integrated into iTunes on Mac and the stock Music app for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, and apps will also be available for Apple TV and Android.

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Top Rated Comments

sdz Avatar
121 months ago
These are the same people that approved the purchase of Beats, correct? What did they think Apple was going to do? Of course Apple is going to release a streaming service. Why is that a concern now and not when they approved the purchase? Seems silly to me, but I am sure there is more to it than I am aware of, or at least I hope so.
If they integrate streaming right into iOS (which makes sense) then this would lead to an antitrust investigation I guess.

At this time it is only an App (Beats) which needs to be installed by the customer and it is not available in the EU.

Maybe this will be another record penalty for the EU. It serves them right. Apple is a tax cheater. I hate them for that.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MH01 Avatar
121 months ago
Interesting how everyone is defending apple and having a dig at the EU commission without knowing the facts.

Wonder if these same people will also complain when their free spotify or other service that is funded by ads loses labels.

Think of the consequences that this article is hinting at.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Porco Avatar
121 months ago
Apple should just make what they do great and let others worry about trying to do the same, not try to leverage their power to undermine other companies' business models. Not only could it get them in hot water again, it's just plain wrong.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Menel Avatar
121 months ago
And our EU forum friends wonder why they don't always get the full suite of Apple features.

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I imagine this might go like Microsoft and IE in Europe years ago where MS was prohibited from bundling IE with Windows.
Microsoft had 90+% market share.
vs
iOS has a mere 20% market share. They aren't anywhere close to abusing any sort of monopoly position. They don't have anything that looks remotely like a monopoly position.
http://www.idc.com/prodserv/smartphone-os-market-share.jsp

The EU going after them, is merely a money grab by corrupt politicians.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RJCP Avatar
121 months ago
As a European citizen, this continent's technological advance is crippled by Medieval bureaucratic non-sense. Take the UK for example, with less than 20 banks and yet Apple hasn't managed to overcome all the bureaucratic obstacles to launch apple pay. Yet the same banks are happily pushing contactless payment cards which allow you to pay without any sort of security or authentication.

Rumour has it that Apple is working with NHS to try and modernise the hospital system. Boy, is Apple in for a lifetime of frustration...
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
zin Avatar
121 months ago
So you can investigate companies because you have concerns over something they might do in the future? Does the EC have specific evidence that Apple is trying to kill off ad-supported streaming music?

Prevention is the best medicine.

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit to block AT&T's proposed takeover of T-Mobile because after the merger they suspected AT&T would raise prices and abuse their more powerful market position.

The EC is attempting to collect evidence. If they don't find any then they won't launch a formal antitrust investigation.

What's so bad about that?
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)