The European Parliament has approved a major piece of antitrust legislation targeting tech companies: the Digital Markets Act (DMA). This massive bill has a number of implications, but three of them in particular are problematic for Apple.
First of all, the law is sure to disrupt Apple’s famous (or infamous, depending on the people) ecosystem. Apple users around the world have long faced the difficulty of texting only to find themselves faced with a green bubble. One of the most recognized benefits of using Apple products, iMessage support for other operating systems has long been a highly requested feature. The DMA could remedy this by requiring Apple to implement some form of message interoperability.
Second, DMA will cause Apple to Tightly integrate third-party payment methods into iOS apps. In theory, developers should be allowed to freely choose the platform that best suits their needs and use it accordingly.
Third, and perhaps most interestingly, DMA could cause the App Store to lose its monopoly on user choice when it comes to downloading apps to their Apple devices.
The DMA may well force Apple to tolerate competing app vendors operating alongside its prized App Store.
All in all, the European Union could prove to be the main obstacle preventing Apple from preserving the integrity of its business model. Having already settled the issue of the USB-C standard (and, by extension, threatening Apple’s proprietary Lighting Port standard), the EU has now set its sights on the software side of the USB-C ecosystem. ‘Apple.
Even if that translates to some pain down Apple’s back, consumers can’t help but be glad that someone is finally questioning some of the US tech giant’s controversial practices. After all, Apple shouldn’t be allowed to get away with it just because it’s the biggest tech company in the world. On the contrary — with great power comes great… legislation.