Spotify announced this morning that it’s filed an antitrust complaint against Apple with the European Union, the EU body that handles antitrust issues, alleging that the iPhone maker is harming consumer choice and stifling innovation via the rules it enforces on the App Store.
Spotify CEO Daniel Ek outlined in a blog post yesterday his angst with Apple’s so-called “Apple tax”, the 30 percent cut Apple takes from subscriptions made via the App Store. Ek claims this “tax” is designed to harm streaming services that compete with Apple’s own.
“If we pay this tax, it would force us to artificially inflate the price of our Premium membership well above the price of Apple Music,” he writes. “And to keep our price competitive for our customers, that isn’t something we can do.”
As well as filing a complaint with the European Commission,Spotify has launched a press campaign, featuring a website dedicated to Apple’s questionable behavior and a YouTube video explaining the company’s grievances.
Ek also states that other digital services, such as Uber or Deliveroo, are not subject to the tax, accusing Apple of using similar discriminatory practices against competitors for Siri and Apple Watch.
A spokesperson for the European Commission told The Wall Street Journal that it had received Spotify’s complaint and was “assessing [it] under our standard procedures.” At the time of publication Apple had not responded to a request for comment.