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Sen. Warren calls for break up of Apple's smartphone 'monopoly'

Published 04/19/2024, 03:32 PM
Updated 04/19/2024, 03:43 PM
© Reuters. -- Senator Elizabeth Warren on Thursday called for the break up of Apple's "monopoly" in the smartphone market, and said the green bubbles that appear in conversations between iPhone and non-iPhone users were ruining relationships.  

"It's time to break up, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)'s monopoly now," Warren said in a post on X, accusing Apple of using "dirty tactics" to keep a "stranglehold on its smartphone market." 

Warren described a myriad ways -- including the exclusion of non-iPhone users from group chats, texts from sports team --  in which Apple is using its alleged monopoly power. "Green texts on iPhones, they're ruining relationships," Warren added. 

"Non iPhone users everywhere are being excluded from texts from group texts, from sports teams chats, to birthday chats to vacation plan chats, they're cutting cut out," Warren said.  "Apple has used its monopoly on smartphones to lock Americans into services and amass billions of dollars in profits."

Warren welcomed the Department of Justice's lawsuit against Apple filed last month in which the DoJ accused Apple of violating antitrust laws by maintaining monopoly power in the smartphone market. "It's the right thing to do," Warren said.

A business operating as a monopoly is often faces a lack of competition in markets where there are no alternatives, but industry data show that there are alternatives to the iPhone amid intense competition from rivals including android powered smartphones. 

As of March 2024 iPhone has a 57% market share, to Android 43% in North America, recent data from web analytics service StatCounter showed. 

The DoJ, however, claims that Apple uses its App Store to attract lock in customers and developers using conditions and rules it sets for the App store to stop apps that are seen as a threat. The lawsuit, if successful, could force Appel to open up its App Store, which is a key growth engine for the company. 


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