Apple faces third antitrust investigation from Italian watchdog

Apple Park photo of the side of the main building
Apple Park photo of the side of the main building (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Italy is launching another antitrust investigation into Apple.
  • The investigation is also looking into Google and Dropbox.
  • This is the third antitrust investigation into Apple from Italy's watchdog.

According to a report from Reuters, Italy has opened an antitrust investigation into Apple, Google, and Dropbox over each company's cloud computing services. The country's antitrust watchdog, the Autorita' Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato, is investigating the companies for "improper commercial practices" and "unfair clauses in contract conditions."

Italy's antitrust authority said on Monday it had opened an inquiry into Google Inc, Apple Inc and Dropbox Inc over cloud computing services. "The proceedings relate to alleged improper commercial practices and the possible inclusion of unfair clauses in contract conditions," the authority said in a statement.

This is the third antitrust investigation launched by Italy into Apple. Most recently, the country launched an investigation into Apple and Amazon over sales tactics. That investigation, as stated by the AGCM, focuses specifically on whether Apple and Amazon worked together to restrict the sale of Apple and Beats products from third-party sellers on Amazon's website.

"This investigation is aimed at ascertaining whether Apple and Amazon have put in place an agreement restricting competition to prohibit the sale of Apple and Beats branded products by electronics retailers not participating in the official Apple program, subjects, the latter, who however, they legitimately purchase products from wholesalers and then resell them to retail."

In addition, Apple also lost an appeal in Italy over the never-ending iPhone slow down scandal. Years ago, Apple slowed down iPhone performance of older devices in order to maintain battery performance. The court ruled that Apple should have notified consumers of the change, therefore rejecting the company's appeal over the original ruling.

"The Board believes that the Authority has correctly considered that the information relating to the battery concerns essential aspects of the device and, as such, should have been made available to consumers in accordance with the professional diligence required by companies of a world-leading group operating worldwide in the high technology sector."

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.