Apple claims Spotify wants ‘limitless access’ to App Store without paying

Apple Inc. blasted Spotify Technology late Thursday over its long-running complaint with the European Union that could soon lead to a $539 million fine against the iPhone maker.

“We’re happy to support the success of all developers — including Spotify, which is the largest music-streaming app in the world,” Apple said in a statement to MarketWatch. “Spotify pays Apple nothing for the services that have helped them build, update and share their app with Apple users in 160 countries spanning the globe.

“Fundamentally, their complaint is about trying to get limitless access to all of Apple’s tools without paying anything for the value Apple provides.” 

The EU is expected to levy a €500 million ($539 million) fine against Apple

following a regulatory investigation into allegations that Apple silenced music-streaming rivals, including Spotify
on its platforms.

The penalty, which would be Apple’s first-ever from the bloc, stems from a Spotify complaint in 2019. Spotify claims App Store rules limit choice and competition because Apple charges a 30% fee — an “unfair tax” — on purchases made through the store, including music-streaming subscriptions.

Apple said Spotify — which it said has grown into the largest digital-music business in the world, with more than 50% market share in Europe — had the option to directly link to its website for account creation and management but chose not to. It also contended Spotify and other music-streaming services had many open channels, including email marketing and social media, to advertise to consumers.

Additionally, Apple said the European Commission failed to find any evidence of consumer harm or anticompetitive behavior.

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