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DoJ Sues Apple


On March 21, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit against Apple, along with several other states, accusing the tech giant of illegally monopolizing the smartphone industry. The DOJ alleges that Apple’s actions have led to increased prices for consumers and developers, making them more reliant on its phones. The parties contend that Apple ‘selectively’ imposes contractual restrictions on developers and withholds critical ways of accessing the phone to prevent competition from arising, a practice that directly affects consumers.


Additionally, Apple has been accused of disrupting “super apps” that encompass many different programs and could degrade “iOS stickiness” by making it easier for iPhone users to switch to competing devices. The company has also been accused of blocking cloud-streaming apps for things like video games that would lower the need for more expensive hardware, suppressing the quality of messaging between the iPhone and competing platforms like Android, limiting the functionality of third-party smartwatches with its iPhones, and making it harder for Apple Watch users to switch from the iPhone due to compatibility issues. Apple has also been accused of blocking third-party developers from creating competing digital wallets with tap-to-pay functionality for the iPhone.


The DOJ and 14 other states are attempting to stop Apple from using its advantage in the smartphone industry to block streaming apps like Xbox Gamepass, Playstation Now, and Geforce Now from the App Store. This move, if successful, could lead to a more open and competitive app market, benefiting both developers and consumers. Over 41% of Americans own an iPhone, which is 1435000 millions of Americans. According to CNN, both Apple and the American people were aware that this lawsuit was forthcoming, as the DOJ had been mentioning it. This may also be due to the fact that the EU had previously sued Apple twice. The first lawsuit was over the company’s forcing Apple to switch to the Lightning cable, which they did for all new phones worldwide. The second lawsuit was over Apple’s refusal to allow streaming apps like those mentioned before.


Apple has stated that the lawsuit will have no effect on its business and that it will fight it. However, some individuals, such as believe that the lawsuit is unnecessary, as they feel that Apple is actually improving the smartphone business. 


I spoke to Jayden Aragon, and he said that even though he understands the concern of the lawsuit, he thinks it is very unnecessary as he does think Apple is actually making the smartphone business better. 


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