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Big Tech files objections to designation as key service providers

Microsoft and Apple want some of their service be exempt of Digital Market Act.

11.Sep.23 7:03 AM
By Abigail Richards
Photo Photobank


Big Tech files objections to designation as key service providers
Six major tech companies have been classified as providers of such powerful services that consumers can hardly avoid them. These companies must adhere to stricter regulations in the EU to ensure they handle their responsibilities correctly.

These companies are Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta, and Microsoft. The European Commission has designated these companies as so-called gatekeepers. This means they serve as the primary gateway between consumers and key services, such as TikTok, Facebook, Google Maps, and WhatsApp.

In total, the Commission has identified 22 such services as core platform services. These are services that consumers or businesses can hardly do without.

The mentioned companies now have six months to comply with a list of requirements falling under the new European Digital Markets Act (DMA). This law aims to prevent powerful tech companies from imposing unfair conditions on businesses and users.

Users of key services must also have more choice and freedom in the services they want to use. It was announced last year that the DMA could enable users of different chat services to communicate with each other. User privacy must also be better protected.

High fines if companies do not comply with the rules

It is up to the tech companies themselves to comply with the rules. The European Commission will monitor whether this actually happens.

If not, the Commission can impose fines. These fines can amount to up to 10 percent of the company's total global revenue. For repeated violations, the fine can even be as much as 20 percent of the revenue.

However, Microsoft and Apple have raised objections. According to the concerns, their services iMessage (Apple) and Bing, Edge, and Microsoft Advertising (Microsoft) are not covered by the Commission's selection.

To investigate these objections, the Commission has opened four market investigations. These must be completed within five months.

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