Bill Targeting Apple, Google’s “Twin Monopolies” Advances
A bipartisan bill aimed at loosening the “twin monopolies” that Google and Apple hold over their app stores has been advanced in a landslide Senate vote, passing 21-2.
The Open App Markets bill would stop Apple and Google forcing app developers to use their own payments systems for which the two tech giants take commissions of up to 30 per cent.
“We have let these largest app stores owned and run by digital giants act anti-competitively for far too long,” Senator Amy Klobuchar said.
“Apple and Google basically operate twin monopolies in app distribution through their app stores.”
The bill will now advance to the full Senate, and will be held within months.
“The Open App Markets Act includes provisions that explicitly mandate alternative app stores and ‘sideloading,’ or the direct installation of software from the internet in a way that circumvents the privacy and security protections Apple has designed,” Apple’s senior government affairs director Timothy Powderly argued, ahead of the vote.
“These provisions would allow malware, scams, and data-exploitation to proliferate for the first time on Apple’s secure platform.”
Should the bipartisan bill pass, it will cost both Apple and Google billions in lost revenue each year.