Apple seeks dismissal of India apps market antitrust case, cites tiny market share

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NEW DELHI — Apple Inc has requested India’s antitrust watchdog to throw out a case alleging abuse of market energy within the apps market, saying it’s too small a participant within the South Asian nation the place Google is dominant, a submitting seen by Reuters reveals.

The submitting was made after the Competition Commission of India (CCI) began reviewing allegations that Apple hurts competitors by forcing app builders to make use of its proprietary system which may cost commissions of as much as 30% on in-app purchases.


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Apple denied the allegations in its submitting to the CCI and pressured that its market share in India is an “insignificant” 0-5%, whereas Google instructions 90-100% as its Android working system powers most different smartphones.

“Apple is not dominant in the Indian market … Without dominance, there can be no abuse,” Apple stated within the submission dated Nov. 16 which was signed by its Chief Compliance Officer, Kyle Andeer.

“It has already been established that Google is the dominant player in India,” it added.


Apple and the CCI didn’t reply to a request for remark. A spokesperson for Alphabet Inc’s Google declined to remark when requested about Apple’s assertions within the submitting.

The complainant within the case, a little-known non-profit group referred to as “Together We Fight Society,” stated that Apple with iOS dominates the market for non-licensable cell working programs.

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Apple countered that in its submitting, saying your entire smartphone market – which incorporates licensable programs like Android – is the market that needs to be considered.


Apple additionally described the Indian grievance as a “proxy filing” in its CCI submission, saying that the complainant was “likely acting in concert with parties with whom Apple has ongoing commercial and contractual disputes globally and/or that have complained to other regulators.”

The U.S. tech firm didn’t give any proof in its submission to assist its declare. The non-profit advised Reuters that Apple’s comment was “made to prejudice the mind” of the CCI “without any iota of proof.”

In the approaching weeks, the CCI will overview Apple’s response to the allegations and will order a wider investigation or dismiss the case altogether if it finds no benefit in it. Details of CCI investigations should not publicly disclosed.

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The CCI is individually conducting an investigation into Google’s in-app fee system as half of a broader probe into the corporate after Indian startups final 12 months voiced concern.

Apple’s iOS powered about 2% of 520 million smartphones in India as of end-2020 with the remaining utilizing Android, in keeping with Counterpoint Research, although it provides that Apple’s smartphone base within the nation has greater than doubled within the final 5 years.


Apple has been grappling with related allegations in different components of the world. In the United States, it’s locked in a authorized battle with “Fornite” creator Epic Games over the problem and South Korea this 12 months turned the primary nation to ban dominant app retailer operators from forcing builders to make use of their fee programs.

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In the European Union, regulators final 12 months began an investigation into Apple’s in-app charges for distribution of paid digital content material and different restrictions.

Companies like Apple and Google say their charges cowl the safety and advertising and marketing advantages their app shops present.

In its CCI submitting, Apple argued that the in-app commissions it fees are “not unfair or excessive” and have decreased over time, including that it fees decrease charges from small builders.

“Only a small number of large developers, many of which are multi-billion-dollar conglomerates, pay the headline rate of 30%,” Apple stated.

“Competing platforms have charged similar or higher commissions as Apple. Particularly, Google has charged a 30% commission on its app store,” it stated.

(Reporting by Aditya Kalra in New Delhi; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

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