European Union

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European Union Guides

The EU Wants All Phones to Work With Interoperable Chargers, Here’s What That Means for Apple's Lightning Port

Friday February 21, 2020 9:29 am PST by
Despite pushback from Apple, the European Parliament in January voted overwhelmingly for new rules to establish a common charging standard for mobile device makers across the European Union. This article explores what form the EU laws might ultimately take and how they could affect Apple device users in Europe and elsewhere. What Exactly is the EU Calling For? To reduce cost, electronic...

European Union Articles

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Facebook Temporarily Disables Some Messenger and Instagram Features in Europe to Comply With EU Data Rules

Thursday December 17, 2020 4:08 am PST by
Some Messenger and Instagram features are temporarily unavailable to users in Europe in order to comply with new rules on data usage currently being rolled out in EU countries. Affected users are seeing alerts in the Facebook-owned apps that some features aren’t available to "respect new rules for messaging services in Europe." The alert doesn't specify what the missing features are, but ...
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EU Introduces Strict Rules on Big Tech Companies to Promote Competition and Protect Users

Tuesday December 15, 2020 9:10 am PST by
Big tech companies, including Apple, Amazon, Google, and Facebook, could soon face new wide-reaching regulations in the European Union, under new legislation presented today by the European Commission (via CNBC). Amid concern for smaller European companies looking to compete in the European market, the European Commission today presented two new pieces of legislation that aim to strictly...
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Apple TV+ Could Face Ban in Europe Unless It Meets Proposed Requirement of 30% European Content

Wednesday December 9, 2020 9:57 am PST by
Irish lawmakers implementing European Union directives are proposing new legislation that would require streaming services, including Apple TV+, Amazon Prime Video, and Netflix, to host at least 30 percent European content or face being shut down across the EU. These clauses of the "General Scheme of the Online Safety and Media Regulation Bill" come in response to the overwhelming amount...
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European Parliament Votes to Support Right to Repair

Friday November 27, 2020 9:00 am PST by
The European Parliament has this week voted to support the recommendations of the EU Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection on the "Right to Repair," including a system of mandatory labelling on consumer electronics to provide explicit information on the repairability and lifespan of products (via iFixit). The motion will compel the EU Commission to "develop and introduce ...
European Commisssion

Top EU Antitrust Investigator Warns Against Break Up of Big Tech Companies

Wednesday October 28, 2020 7:16 am PDT by
As the European Union increasingly targets big tech companies, top antitrust enforcer Margrethe Vestager has warned against the structural break up of big tech companies (via The Information). The comments were somewhat surprising, as Vestager has aggressively pursued antitrust investigations against the likes of Apple, Google, and Amazon in recent years. For example, it was Vestager who...
European Commisssion

Apple Reportedly on EU 'Hit List' of Big Tech Companies Targeted for Regulation

Monday October 12, 2020 8:39 am PDT by
EU regulators are taking aim at up to 20 big tech companies, including Apple, as part of a "hit list" that seeks to curb their market influence, reports The Financial Times. The plans reportedly involve the demand that larger tech companies face tougher regulations than smaller competitors, data sharing with rivals, and increased transparency on data gathering. The move is part of a wider...
European Commisssion

EU Plans to Ban Tech Companies From Pre-Installing Apps, Force Them to Share Data With Competitors

Thursday October 1, 2020 7:46 am PDT by
The EU is planning to implement wide-ranging legal measures to compel major tech companies to share data with competitors and give no preference to their own apps and services, according to a new report by the Financial Times. As part of its new Digital Services Act, the EU is planning to force the likes of Apple, Amazon, and Google to hand over customer data to smaller rivals in an effort ...
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EU to Appeal Against Apple's $15 Billion Tax Bill Ruling

Friday September 25, 2020 4:12 am PDT by
The European Commission on Friday said it would appeal a court ruling that overturned its demand that Apple pay 13 billion euros ($14.5 billion) in tax to the Irish government (via CNBC). "The Commission has decided to appeal before the European Court of Justice the General Court's judgment of July 2020 on the Apple State aid case in Ireland," Margrethe Vestager, the head of competition policy...
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Recent Hints Point Toward Apple Card International Expansion

Friday September 11, 2020 9:57 am PDT by
Over a year after its U.S. launch, MacRumors has uncovered a range of evidence to suggest that Apple Card may soon be launching internationally. A source claiming to be close to an unnamed Australian banking corporation involved in supporting ‌‌Apple Card‌‌ in Australia tells MacRumors that ‌Apple Card‌ will be launching in multiple new regions as soon as the end of this year. The tip...
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Encrypted Messaging App Telegram Files Antitrust Complaint Against Apple With EU

Thursday July 30, 2020 4:52 am PDT by
Apple is facing another antitrust complaint in Europe, this time from the developers of encrypted messaging app Telegram. In a complaint to the EU Commission, the app's creators argue that Apple must give iOS users the opportunity to download software outside of the App Store. The Financial Times reports: In a complaint to EU competition chief Margrethe Vestager, Telegram, which has more...
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Apple Wins Backing of EU General Court Over 13 Billion Euro Tax Bill

Wednesday July 15, 2020 3:41 am PDT by
The EU General Court today overturned a ruling by the European Commission stating that Apple should pay 13 billion euros ($14.5 billion) in tax to the Irish government. The court sided with Apple, and said the EU authority, led by antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager, had failed to show Ireland's tax arrangements with the company were illegal state aid. Today's decision can be appealed. Both ...
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EU Advertisers Criticize New App Tracking Privacy Controls in iOS 14

Friday July 3, 2020 4:44 am PDT by
A Google-backed group of European digital advertising associations has criticized Apple for requiring apps in iOS 14 to seek additional permission from users before tracking them across other apps and websites, reports Reuters. Sixteen marketing associations, some of which are backed by Facebook and Alphabet's Google, faulted Apple for not adhering to an ad-industry system for seeking user...
European Commisssion

EU Announces Investigations into App Store In-App Purchase Rules and Apple Pay

Tuesday June 16, 2020 4:50 am PDT by
The European Commission today said it has opened two formal antitrust investigations into Apple's App Store and Apple Pay mobile payment system. The first investigation will assess whether Apple's rules for app developers on the distribution of apps via the ‌App Store‌ violate EU competition rules. It will focus in particular on the mandatory use of Apple's own in-app purchases system...
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Apple Faces New EU Antitrust Complaint Over 30% App Store Commission Rate

Tuesday June 16, 2020 3:38 am PDT by
Apple is facing another European antitrust complaint, this time over its 30 percent cut on ebooks in the App Store. The complaint was made to the European Commission by Rakuten's Kobo subsidiary, which alleges that Apple's commission rate is anti-competitive when it also promotes its own Apple Books service. According to a Financial Times report, Kobo argues that having to pay Apple 30...
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Tile Writes to EU Accusing Apple of Abuse of Power

Friday May 29, 2020 5:29 am PDT by
Bluetooth accessory maker Tile has written to the European Union accusing Apple of abuse of power and of illegally favoring its own products. According to a report by Financial Times, in a letter sent on Tuesday to the European Commissioner for Competition, the accessory maker said that Apple is making it harder for users to use Tile products on iPhone because it has its own rival Find My...
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Irish Regulators 'in Contact' With Apple Over Siri Quality Control Program

Thursday May 21, 2020 11:55 am PDT by
Ireland's Data Protection Commissioner (DPC) is "in contact" with Apple after a former Apple contractor asked the DPC to investigate Apple's practice of allowing employees to listen to Siri recordings, reports Reuters. The contractor, Thomas Le Bonniec, requested the assistance of the DPC in May and called for greater protection under the EU's privacy laws. DPC Deputy Commissioner Graham...
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Apple CEO Tim Cook Says Contact Tracing API Available From April 28

Thursday April 23, 2020 4:59 am PDT by
Following a conference call with Apple CEO Tim Cook, EU industry leader Thierry Breton has said in a statement that Apple has a "responsibility" to make sure that contact tracing apps work on its iPhones, reports Reuters. Image via @ThierryBreton It is "the responsibility of companies such as Apple to do their utmost to develop suitable technical solutions to make the national apps work....
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Disney+ to Launch Across Europe This Week With Reduced Streaming Quality, Launch in France Delayed

Monday March 23, 2020 5:31 am PDT by
Disney's premium streaming service, Disney+, will launch across Europe on Tuesday with temporarily degraded video quality, according to Reuters. The measure aims to reduce the burden on the continent's data networks as millions of people switch to working from home. In a company statement, Disney said it had agreed to a European Union request for streaming-video providers to "ensure the...
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Netflix Reduces Streaming Video Quality in Europe to Lower Data Usage and Ease Strain on Broadband Networks

Thursday March 19, 2020 2:40 pm PDT by
Netflix has complied with a request from the European Union to lower its streaming video quality in Europe to ease network strain from the millions of people working from home. According to the BBC, Netflix is reducing video quality in Europe for the next 30 days. Netflix says that the change will reduce data consumption by 25 percent, but that viewers will still be satisfied with picture...
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EU Lawmakers Vote Overwhelmingly in Favor of Common Charging Standard, Despite Apple's Protestations [Updated]

Friday January 31, 2020 2:27 am PST by
Despite criticism from Apple, EU lawmakers on Thursday voted overwhelmingly in favor for new rules to establish a common charger for all mobile device makers across Europe (via Reuters). Members of the European Parliament voted by 582-40 for a resolution urging the European Commission, which drafts EU laws, to ensure that EU consumers are no longer obliged to buy new chargers with each new...