Facebook accuses Apple of anti-competitive behavior due to privacy changes

Technology News

Katie Paul

Sheila Dang

PALO ALTO / NEW YORK (Reuters) – Facebook Inc accused rival Apple Inc on Wednesday of engaging in anti-competitive practices, firing another shot at a month-long standoff between the two tech giants over Apple’s planned privacy changes for iOS14.

FILE PHOTO: A Facebook logo is displayed on a smartphone in this illustration taken January 6, 2020. REUTERS / Dado Ruvic / Illustration
FILE PHOTO: An Apple logo hangs above the entrance to the Apple Store on 5th Avenue in the Manhattan neighborhood of New York City, July 21, 2015. REUTERS / Mike Segar

“Apple is acting anti-competitive by using their control over the App Store to drive their bottom line to the detriment of creators and small businesses. Full stop, ”Dan Levy, Facebook’s vice president for ads and business products, told reporters.

In response, Apple said the new rules would not require Facebook to change its “ approach to user tracking and targeted ad creation, ” but rather to allow users on Apple devices to choose whether to commit to those practices. want to sign up.

“We believe this is a simple matter of standing up for our users. Users need to know when their data is being collected and shared with other apps and websites – and they should have a choice whether or not to allow it, ”Apple said in a statement.

The world’s largest social media company posted full-page ads in major newspapers criticizing Apple’s plans, limiting apps’ ability to collect data from people’s phones that can be used for targeted advertising.

A blog post stated that Apple’s own personalized advertising platform would be exempt from the new prompt requirement that the iPhone maker plans to impose on other companies.

Apple said in June that such activity would require a pop-up notification asking iOS users “permission to track you through apps and websites owned by other companies,” which digital ad agencies expect to refuse the most.

Levy said that while Facebook disagreed with Apple’s approach, it would comply with the new rules and display a prompt. “We don’t have a choice if we want our app to be available in the App Store,” he said.

He declined to say whether Facebook would take action to push back against the policy.

Facebook and Apple also have confusion over the commission fee the iPhone maker charges for apps listed on iOS devices, with Facebook retuning to small developers most affected by the policy.

Opposition to Apple grew further Wednesday when Digital Content Next, a digital media trade association representing members such as The New York Times and The Washington Post, said it had joined the Coalition for App Fairness.

The nonprofit, which includes members like Epic Games and Spotify, is calling on regulators around the world to fight “anti-competitive” app store practices, such as Apple’s 30% lower revenue on in-app purchases.

Facebook previously tried to send a notification to its users about Apple’s fees, but said Apple declined its “transparency notice.”

Facebook said in a blog post that it was “committed to providing relevant information” in a federal antitrust lawsuit brought by Epic Games against the commission rules, but declined to specify how it would participate in the lawsuit.

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