UK to investigate Apple and Google’s ‘stranglehold’ on browsing

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority launched an investigation on Tuesday Apple Spirit Googlecontrol of the mobile browser market.

The agency will investigate companies’ “stranglehold” on browsing, as well as Apple’s control of cloud gaming through the App Store, a press release said. The agency said that Google and Apple powered 97% of all internet browsing that took place in the UK in 2021.

Web developers, cloud gaming service providers and browser vendors have offered “substantial support” for the investigation, according to the results of a consultation published by the agency in June. They claim that the status quo limits innovation and imposes “unnecessary costs” on their companies.

Developers also complained that Apple’s restrictions are making it difficult to create innovative new apps for UK consumers, forcing them to deal with glitches and bugs when building websites.

Sarah Cardell, the CMA’s interim executive director, said in the release that the agency plans to use its powers to address issues where it can.

“Many UK companies and web developers tell us they feel they are being held back by restrictions from Apple and Google,” she said. “We plan to investigate whether the concerns we have raised are valid and, if so, to identify steps to improve competition and innovation in these sectors.”

A Google spokesman said: “Android gives people a wider choice of apps and app stores than any other mobile platform. It also allows developers to choose the browser engine they want and has been the launch pad for millions of apps. We are committed to building thriving, open platforms that empower consumers and help developers build successful businesses.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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