After escaping a fine of 13 billion euros last Wednesday (15), Apple is again in the sights of the European Union (EU). This time, the investigation, which will also reach other companies, is about possible monopoly practices in relation to the market for voice assistants .
According to Reuters , EU competition regulators are analyzing information from 400 technology companies, with the aim of checking if there is any kind of misconduct in relation to virtual assistants, such as Siri , one of the most popular tools in the segment.
The interest in investigating this market was motivated the huge amount of data involved in devices internet of things . For the executive body of the European Union, it is essential that those involved in this area do not use the control of the information obtained to harm competitors or prevent the entry of new participants.
Investigations similar to this one have already taken place in other sectors, such as electronic commerce, financial services, pharmaceuticals and energy, resulting in heavy fines in some cases.
Google and Amazon will also be investigated
In addition to Apple, other tech giants and hardware manufacturers are also the target of this new investigation. Among them are Amazon , responsible for Alexa , and Google , with its Google Assistant .
According to European Commission Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager, the investigation “sends an important message to the powerful operators in this market, that we are watching and that they need to do business in accordance with competition rules.”
If competition irregularities are found, companies could face an antitrust charge and be fined up to 10% of their global revenue. In the case of Apple, the fine would reach 23 billion euros.