Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was the target of yet another politician on Wednesday. Earlier this week, Nancy Pelosi commented, “Poor Tim,” and now Hillary Clinton’s potential running mate and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren has accused Google, Amazon and Apple of using their size to “snuff out competition.” The comments by Warren came during a speech at an event called “America’s Monopoly Problem.”
Spotify backs Warren against Apple (AAPL)
The Massachusetts senator gave different reasons for naming the three tech companies. The general theme was that all three use their power and size to “lock out smaller guys and newer guys.” Warren accused Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) of placing conditions on rivals, thus making it harder for them to offer their competitive streaming services. She referred to Apple Music specifically.
Spotify is the biggest competitor of Apple’s music service, so Recode reached out to it for a comment on Warren’s claim. As expected, Spotify did not hold back. Jonathan Prince, head of communications and public policy, said the iPhone maker gives itself an unfair advantage, both in terms of feature support and pricing.
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“Apple has long used its control of iOS to squash competition in music, driving up the prices of its competitors, inappropriately forbidding us from telling our customers about lower prices, and giving itself unfair advantages across its platform through everything from the lock screen to Siri,” Prince said.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) makes less from its music service subscription and more from a Spotify subscription and still does not share any of that with the music industry, says Prince.
Is Warren right?
Warren accused Amazon of using its dominant position to steer consumers to books published by itself. It is ironic to see that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is currently paying $400 million to users who purchased e-books from the Amazon, among other services, in its price-fixing settlement.
Warren accused Google of using its search engine to harm competitors of its Google Plus user review feature. Currently, the search giant is tied up in many anti-trust cases in Europe, including one accusing it of manipulating search results to favor its own products.
Apple, Amazon and Google have created disruptive technologies that changed the world, and they deserve to be highly successful. But the opportunity to compete must remain open for smaller players and new entrants also that want their chance to change the world again.
On Wednesday, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares closed up 0.87% at $94.40. Year to date, the stock is down more than 12%, while in the last year, it is down almost 26%.