Zuckerberg Points to the Success of Other Big Tech Giants During the Antitrust Hearing, Says Amazon, Google, YouTube, TikTok and Apple Might Be More Powerful As Compared To Facebook

At Wednesday’s US House Judiciary antitrust hearing looking into big four tech companies- Apple, Amazon, Google, and Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of the world’s largest social media platform didn’t hesitate to point out that Facebook lags behind rival companies on various aspects. Zuckerberg began the hearing by pointing to the success of ByteDance-owned TikTok, Apple, and Google. He argued that the competition is still alive and well in the industry.

Each executive had 5 minutes to share their opening remarks before answering questions being asked by the Judiciary Committee. Surprisingly, the CEO of Facebook used this opportunity to make Facebook appear weaker as compared to other tech giants, and thus less of an antitrust threat than Google, Apple, and Amazon. Interestingly, these comments were not in the prepared comments of Mark Zuckerberg.

Mark Zuckerberg stated that Apple’s iMessage is the most popular messaging app in the United States. It is worth noting that particular Apple applications such as iMessage are not a focus of the antitrust concerns for Apple, instead the antitrust concerns are how Apple operates the App Store such as the 30% commission fee charged by Apple. However, Facebook CEO’s comment infers that the popularity of iMessage is something that should be under investigation by the Judiciary Committee. He said that don’t worry about Facebook, look at ‘them.’

He also added that the China-based TikTok app is the fastest-growing application, while Google-owned YouTube is the most popular video application. In terms of ads, Zuckerberg said that Amazon is the fastest-growing ads platform, while Google is the largest one. Mark Zuckerberg explained that for every $1 spent on advertising in the United States, less than 10 cents in spent with Facebook.

Such remarks come as Facebook is being scrutinized for the company’s acquisitions of other social services such as Instagram, WhatsApp, and Giphy. Particularly, Zuckerberg was pressed about Instagram’s acquisition. A NY Democrat, Representative Jerry Nadler, pressed the company’s CEO about Instagram’s acquisition in 2012. Nadler cited emails shared by The Verge of Zuckerberg stating that Instagram’s acquisition could help to neutralize a rival.

Facebook CEO said that the deal was reviewed by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission), and Instagram was a tiny photo-sharing platform at that time, he added. Facebook CEO is also framing tech giants such as Apple as the company’s main competitors since questions have also risen around whether Facebook’s reach and distribution make it a competitor to smaller news outlets.

Read next: Report: Facebook-owned Instagram Offers Popular TikTok Creators A Lot of Money to Leave Its Rival Platform and Use Reel
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