What you need to know

  • The House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has confirmed that Apple has sent initial submissions to its antitrust probe.
  • Google, Amazon and Facebook have also complied.
  • Not all information requested has been provided, House expects request to be fulfilled entirely.

The House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has confirmed that Apple has made initial submissions of requested data in its antitrust probe into anti-competitive conduct.

Along with Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook have also begun to make submissions. According to a report from AppleInsider

As part of the investigation, launched in the end of the summer, the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has asked for a great deal of data. The committee has announced that the data has started to come in, but is still awaiting more.

"We have received initial submissions from Alphabet, Amazon, Apple and Facebook as part of our investigation. While we do not yet have all of the information we requested, we expect that all four companies will provide the information in short order," leaders of the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee said in a statement very late on Tuesday evening. "We look forward to their continued compliance with the committee's investigation."

The report notes that the committee is investigating competition in digital markets and anti-competitive conduct online in a bid to determine whether existing laws and policies provide enough protection from these issues.

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One such practice the committee intends to investigate Apple for is "Sherlocking", whereby a company adopts concepts from third-party developers as their own. A current example would be Sidecar in macOS Catalina, which is Apple's own version of third-party apps like Duet Display and Luna Display.

The committee is also seeking information on how Apple manges the App Store, requesting information regarding third-party payment systems, revenue sharing and user options to use third-party apps as default apps.

As mentioned, the probe also concerns Google, Amazon and Facebook, where investigations will cover search algorithms, favoritism of Amazon Basics brands, and Facebook data collection and a potential monopoly over the instant messaging market following the acquisition of WhatsApp and Instagram.

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