It’s a busy week for Apple’s legal team as the company prepares to head to D.C., faces new scrutiny over mergers and acquisitions, and continues to defend itself in its fight against Epic Games.
Top exec heading to Senate App Store Hearing: After it was reported this weekend that Apple was deciding to skip out on the upcoming Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust and Consumer Rights hearing, the company said in a letter to Senators Amy Klobuchar and Mike Lee that Chief Compliance Officer Kyle Andeer will attend the hearing, Bloomberg reports. In a letter to the committee, Apple said, “We have deep respect for your role and process on these matters and, as we told your staff, we are willing to participate in a hearing in the subcommittee.” Apple is being investigated over antitrust and competition issues due to the App Store. The hearing is scheduled for April 21.
Senator wants to ban Apple from ever buying another company: U.S. Senator Josh Hawley introduced a bill on Monday that “would ban all mergers and acquisitions by any company with a market value greater than $100 billion,” a move clearly aimed at Apple and other tech companies. Hawley has been a fierce critic of Silicon Valley firms and has loudly complained about conservative “censorship” on social media platforms. According to Reuters, Hawley’s bill is similar to the antitrust bill introduced by Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar, but is “significantly tougher.”
Cook won’t let Epic turn the App Store into a ‘flea market’: While the legal battle is ongoing and likely to stretch out over years, Tim Cook talked to the Toronto Star about Apple’s legal battle with Epic Games over Fortnite. He said Epic’s desire to dictate its own terms and have its own payment system would turn the App Store into a “flea market.” He lamented that the volume of customers using each system would be “significantly lower,” which would be bad for both the user and the developers. “So nobody wins in that environment,” Cook said.
Michael Simon has been covering Apple since the iPod was the iWalk. His obsession with technology goes back to his first PC—the IBM Thinkpad with the lift-up keyboard for swapping out the drive. He's still waiting for that to come back in style tbh.