Antitrust investigation on the rise: Tech giants working on big changes

United States antitrust investigation is underway and it appears as tech companies are already mulling changes.

According to a report published by Bloomberg, Apple may soon enable iPhone users to make third-party apps such as Gmail and Chrome default in their devices.

Similarly, the Wall Street Journal also reported that executives at Google are contemplating a different protocol for their advertising unit and may modify their interactions with publishers.

The snippets of news from various sources indicated that Apple and Google are addressing the scrutiny from Congress, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Department of Justice. The changes also signify that the companies are looking for ways to prevent a potential lawsuit from regulatory bodies.

However, this makes us wonder whether other tech giants, predominantly Amazon and Facebook are also working on ‘big changes’ of their own.

When contacted, representatives from Amazon and Facebook were not available for comment.

Changes at Apple and Google

Since the App Store launched in 2008, Apple only allows its own Safari browser and the Mail as default apps and there is no way to integrate any third-party services for the same. However, lawmakers have repeatedly expressed their concerns to Apple and asked them to include external apps to become default options as well.

In this regard, Apple is also facing a lawsuit filed by app developers that highlight its bias policy that is killing their profit in return. Supreme Court may also see an antitrust case against Apple by iPhone owners for the ‘high’ app prices on Apple’s only app store.

When it comes to Google, the company is facing significant scrutiny over its third-party ad-tech business. According to a report published by Journal, Google allows online publishers to sell ad space to marketers and allows the marketers to bid on ad space on websites around the World Wide Web.

Can we expect the same from others?

For Amazon, the antitrust committee and other regulatory bodies are looking at the way Amazon gives priority to its own products over partners. The lawmakers state this as a wrong practice that impacts consumer’s choices.

Facebook has seen a lot of allegations and scrutiny over its data policy for the past couple of years. The FTC antitrust investigation is also asking Facebook along with four other tech giants to provide all information related to their acquisition strategy of smaller firms.

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