Apple argues that iMessage is not popular enough in the European Union to be regulated
Apple argues that iMessage is not popular enough to be classified as a “gatekeeper” under EU law. financial times reports.
The discussion comes ahead of the publication of the first list of services to be regulated under the Digital Markets Act (DMA). The legislation introduces new rules that apply to tech giants who meet the “gatekeeper” criteria and forces them to open up their services and various platforms to other companies and developers. For example, Apple may have to allow third-party companies and competing apps like Meta’s WhatsApp to integrate directly with iMessage.
In recent correspondence with the European Commission, Apple claimed that iMessage does not meet the number of users to which the DMA rules apply, and that it should not be required to comply with them as a result. Analysts estimate that iMessage has up to one billion users around the world, but Apple has not disclosed any official numbers about the service for several years, or the number of users it has in Europe specifically. Whether iMessage will be included in the EU’s initial list of gatekeeper services will depend on how you define the market in which it operates.
DMA could lead to similarly big changes in the way the App Store, FaceTime, and Siri work over the next couple of years. Apple is expected to add support for side apps outside of the App Store on iPhones and iPads in Europe via an update to iOS 17 later this year due to DMA requirements.
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(tags for translation)iMessage