The Justice Department is reportedly within the “early stages” of drafting an antitrust lawsuit against Apple.
The news site Politico cited “an individual with direct knowledge of the matter” as saying that antitrust investigators are nearing a key “decision point” at which era they are going to should select whether to file what can be a big motion against considered one of the world’s strongest tech firms.
The report said that a lawsuit could possibly be filed sometime before the tip of this calendar yr.
The person cited by Politico cautioned that no decision has been made whether to proceed with a lawsuit — leaving open the likelihood that the federal government will take no motion in anyway.
The Justice Department has been probing the iPhone maker since 2019. The corporate is alleged to have used its market power to take care of an unfair competitive advantage over smaller app and hardware developers.
Tech behemoths like Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook have come under increasing scrutiny from DOJ, Congress and the Federal Trade Commission for alleged business practices that some deem monopolistic.
Amazon recently accused the FTC of “harassing” current and former top executives — amongst them CEO Andy Jassy and his predecessor, Jeff Bezos — during its probe of allegations that that the corporate misled consumers into signing up for its Prime membership.
The Justice Department has been probing alleged antitrust violations by Apple.AFP via Getty Images
In 2020, the Trump Justice Department and Republican-led states filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google over a variety of alleged antitrust violations, amongst them exploiting the search engine’s dominance available in the market to stifle competition.
Apple is already facing legal challenges abroad.
Earlier this yr, the European Union, which has notoriously stricter regulations over businesses, alleged that Apple “abused” its dominant position within the smartphone market to unfairly boost Apple Pay over other mobile payment systems.
The EU had been investigating Apple Pay since June 2020.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has been lobbying Congress to not pass antitrust laws targeting large tech firms, saying that the bills would stifle American innovation.
In April, Cook sounded the alarm as lawmakers within the US and Europe weighed bills that might require Apple to let users download apps from third-party app stores — a process often called “sideloading.”