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Tech Giant Apple Hits Back at Spotify For Antitrust Complaint: Report

The Cupertino, California-headquartered tech giant also alleged that Spotify was also trying to squeeze the artists, musicians and songwriters -- not just the App Store

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Customers walk past an Apple logo inside of an Apple store at Grand Central Station in New York, Aug. 1, 2018. VOA

Taking exception to Spotify’s complaint with the European Union (EU) alleging that the iOS App Store rules are unfair, Apple has slammed the Swedish music streaming giant for wanting “all the benefits of a free app without being free”.

“A full 84 per cent of the apps in the App Store pay nothing to Apple when you download or use the app. That’s not discrimination, as Spotify claims,” Apple said in a statement.

In its complaint with the EU, Spotify said that Apple requires it and other digital services pay a 30 per cent tax on purchases made through Apple’s payment system, including upgrading from a free to premium subscription.

According to Spotify, if it pays this tax, it would force it to artificially inflate the price of its premium membership well above the price of Apple Music.

“And to keep our price competitive for our customers, that isn’t something we can do,” Daniel Ek, CEO of Spotify, wrote in a blog post this week.

Apple, Campus, China
A customer is entering the Apple store in Fairfax, Virginia. VOA

Apple said its revenue share is 30 per cent only for the first year of an annual subscription. It drops to 15 per cent in the years after.

“The only contribution that Apple requires is for digital goods and services that are purchased inside the app using our secure in-app purchase system,” Apple said, adding that building a secure payment system which allows users to have faith in in-app transactions was no small undertaking.

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The Cupertino, California-headquartered tech giant also alleged that Spotify was also trying to squeeze the artists, musicians and songwriters — not just the App Store.

“Just this week, Spotify sued music creators after a decision by the US Copyright Royalty Board required Spotify to increase its royalty payments. This isn’t just wrong, it represents a real, meaningful and damaging step backwards for the music industry,” Apple added in the statement. (IANS)

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Tech Giant Apple Pledges to Alert Users on iPhone Performance

Apple has agreed to do this both for current and future iPhones

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Apple, Campus, China
A customer is entering the Apple store in Fairfax, Virginia. VOA

Apple has committed to be clearer and more upfront with iPhone users about battery health and performance, the UK’s competition watchdog has said.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) had raised consumer law concerns with the Cupertino-based tech giant last year after finding people were not being warned clearly that their phone’s performance could slow down following a 2017 software update designed to manage demands on the battery.

“The CMA became concerned that people might have tried to repair their phone or replace it because they weren’t aware the software update had caused the handset to slow down,” the watchdog said in a statement on late Wednesday.

In addition, people were not able to easily find information about the health of their phone’s battery, which can degrade over time.

After the CMA raised its concerns, Apple started to be more up front with iPhone users.

Apple, chinese
This Monday, Oct. 22, 2018, photo shows from left the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and the iPhone XR in New York. The new XR phone has a larger display and loses the home button to make room for more screen. VOA

“But today’s announcement locks the firm into formal commitments always to notify people when issuing a planned software update if it is expected to materially change the impact of performance management on their phones,” the watchdog added.

Apple will also provide easily accessible information about battery health and unexpected shutdowns, along with guidance on how iPhone users can maximise the health of their phone’s battery.

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This could help people improve the performance of their own handset after a planned software update by, for example, changing settings, adopting the low power mode or replacing the battery – rather than resorting to having their phone repaired or replaced.

Apple has agreed to do this both for current and future iPhones. (IANS)