UK CMA Launches Investigation Into Google and Apple’s “Duopoly” in The Mobile Market

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The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has launched an in-depth investigation into Apple and Google for the dominance of companies in the mobile device market.

Back in June, it turned out that a year-long study of the two firms showed that the tech giants, in fact, have a “duopoly” over mobile ecosystems, especially in Internet browsers and cloud games.

The CMA statement at the time said that Apple “blocked the appearance of cloud gaming services in its App Store.”

“Gaming apps are a key source of revenue for Apple, and cloud gaming can pose a real threat to Apple’s strong position in app distribution,” he continued. “By preventing the growth of this sector, Apple risks depriving mobile users of all the benefits of cloud gaming.”

The CMA said it plans to continue exploring the cloud gaming market after hearing complaints from British companies about restrictions related to mobile devices.

The supervisory authority explained that it could issue legally binding orders forcing Google and Apple to change their business practices. In 2021, 97% of all mobile web browsing in the UK was on browsers based on Apple or Google browsers.

According to the Video Games Chronicle, the CMA officially launched an investigation yesterday (November 22).

“Computer games are a multibillion—dollar industry in the UK, played by millions of people,” says a new press release. GOV.UK .

“There are already over 800,000 users of cloud gaming services in the UK, but restrictions on their distribution on mobile devices may hinder growth in this sector, which means that British gamers are missing out on opportunities.”

It adds: “The responses to the consultation, which were published today, show substantial support for a more comprehensive investigation into how Apple and Google dominate the mobile browser market and how Apple restricts cloud gaming through its App Store.

“Many of them have come from browser vendors, web developers and cloud gaming service providers who say the status quo is hurting their business, stifling innovation and increasing unnecessary costs.”

Sarah Cardell, interim CEO of the CMA, said the watchdog wants to “make sure British consumers get the best new mobile data services and British developers can invest in innovative new apps.”

“Many British companies and web developers tell us that they feel they are being held back by the restrictions imposed by Apple and Google,” Cardell continued.

“When the new digital markets regime is introduced, it will probably solve similar problems. In the meantime, we will use the opportunities available to us to solve problems wherever possible. We plan to find out if the concerns we have heard are justified and, if so, identify steps to improve competition and innovation in these sectors.”

Meanwhile, Microsoft recently detailed plans to create its own “next-generation game store” for mobile platforms.

The company outlined its plans in regulatory documents published last month (October 11) to the CMA, which is investigating Microsoft’s controversial offer to acquire Activision Blizzard.

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