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Apple faces monopoly lawsuit by US authorities

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US files monopoly lawsuit against Apple

The US Justice Department and 16 states have filed a sweeping lawsuit against Apple, accusing the tech giant of using exclusionary business practices to maintain the monopoly of its iPhone. The lawsuit alleges that Apple restricts developers and withholds critical access points to keep its products exclusive and prices high for consumers.

US Attorney General Merrick Garland stated, “We allege that Apple has maintained monopoly power in the smartphone market by violating federal antitrust law.” The lawsuit lists various ways Apple uses its smartphone monopoly to block competition, including limiting the functionality of third-party smartwatches and preventing the growth of cross-platform apps that would make it easier for consumers to switch between Apple and rival smartphones.

An Apple spokesperson responded, stating, “This lawsuit…threatens who we are and the principles that set Apple products apart in fiercely competitive markets.” The spokesperson argued that the lawsuit would hinder Apple’s ability to create innovative technology and set a dangerous precedent for government involvement in tech design.

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The government’s lawsuit alleges that Apple’s anticompetitive behavior is designed to maintain its monopoly power while extracting maximum revenue. The lawsuit accuses Apple of preventing the growth of apps, cloud-streaming services, and cross-platform messaging, as well as limiting functionality for third-party smartwatches and digital wallets. Apple’s dominance in the smartphone market, with a 65% share in the US, has made it immensely profitable, but the lawsuit seeks to challenge and weaken this monopoly power.

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