India’s antitrust body orders probe into Apple over alleged abuse of app market
India’s competition watchdog ordered an investigation into Apple Inc’s business practices in India on Friday. It alleged that Apple violated certain antitrust laws. The order from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) came after a non-profit group said that Apple was abusing its position in the apps market across the country.
Reportedly, Apple Inc forced developers to use its proprietary in-app purchase system. The non-profit group, “Together We Fight Society” claimed that the company charges a 30% in-app fee for the distribution of paid digital content across the country. The company also raised costs for app developers and customers in India. It further alleged that it affects the competition of the market.
The Competition Commission of India said that Apple’s restrictions affect competition in the market as the company raised costs for app developers. The Commission further said that Apple denied market access for potential app developers in India.
Investigations into the case
According to Reuters, CCI said, “The Commission at this stage is convinced that a prima facie case is made out against Apple which merits investigation.” The Commission ordered its investigations unit to complete the investigation on this case. A report will be submitted by the investigation unit within 60 days of the order. Reportedly, such investigations go on for several months.
Apple denies the allegations
Reportedly, Apple denied the allegations in a filing to the commission last month. The company asked the regulator to withdraw the case and claimed that its market share in India was an “insignificant” 0-5%. However, the commission said in the order that Apple’s argument on its market share in India was misdirected.
The allegations by the non-profit group are similar to a case Apple faces in the European Union (EU). Last year an investigation was started into the company by the regulators.