Updated February 14th, 2024 at 11:21 IST

Apple, Microsoft secure exemptions for iMessage and Bing from EU’s DMA

Apple's App Store, iOS operating system, Safari browser, Microsoft's LinkedIn social network, and Windows operating system remain categorised as gatekeepers.

Reported by: Business Desk
Satya Nadella and Tim Cook | Image:Satya Nadella, Tim Cook
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EU’s DMA enforcement: Apple and Microsoft have successfully secured exemptions for their iMessage and Bing search engine, respectively, from the new EU tech regulations. The European Union's Digital Markets Act (DMA), set to be enforced in three weeks, aims to promote competition by requiring major tech firms like Apple, Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Meta Platforms, and ByteDance to allow third-party apps on their platforms and facilitate user switching to competitors.

Following a thorough five-month investigation, the European Commission determined that iMessage, Bing, Edge, and Microsoft Advertising do not meet the criteria to be classified as gatekeeper services. Conversely, Apple's App Store, iOS operating system, Safari browser, Microsoft's LinkedIn social network, and Windows operating system remain categorised as gatekeepers.

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Apple argued that iMessage usage is minimal compared to other messaging services in the EU and is not a significant channel for businesses to reach users in the bloc. Similarly, Microsoft contended that Bing, Edge, and Microsoft Advertising operate as challengers in the market and are not pivotal gateways for business users.

Lazar Radic, an antitrust expert at the International Center for Law and Economics, praised the Commission's consideration of market realities and avoidance of over-regulation. However, the Coalition for Open Digital Ecosystems (CODE), comprising Google, Meta Platforms, and Qualcomm, expressed disagreement with the decision, stating that it undermines the DMA's objectives of promoting choice and competition for all Europeans.

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(With Reuters inputs)

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Published February 14th, 2024 at 11:20 IST