Apple (AAPL) Said NO to Spotify Over This

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According to Spotify, tech giant Apple is making it very hard for the company these days as they just blocked a new version of its iPhone app.

The streaming music compay sent a letter to Apple’s top lawyer, saying Apple is “causing grave harm to Spotify and its customers” by rejecting an update to Spotify’s iOS app.

Apple had turned down a new version of the company’s app while citing “business model rules” and demanded that Spotify use Apple’s billing system if “Spotify wants to use the app to acquire new customers and sell subscriptions.”

Apple doesn’t require subscription services to use its iTunes billing service, but it charges a monthly fee of up to 30 percent for those that do. The company doesn’t want app makers to promote alternative subscripton options on their iOS apps.
So how did all this start?

Last year Spotify started a new end-run via a promotional campaign that offered new subscribers the chance to get three months of the service for $0.99. This was only if they signed up via Spotify’s own site.

Spotify revived the campaign in June but then stopped advertising the promotion. It also turned off its App Store billing option, which has led to the current dispute.

Spotify general counsel Horacio Gutierrez says Apple threatened to remove the app from its store unless Spotify stopped telling iPhone users about the promotion.

In a letter he wrote, “This latest episode raises serious concerns under both U.S. and EU competition law.”

“It continues a troubling pattern of behavior by Apple to exclude and diminish the competitiveness of Spotify on iOS and as a rival to Apple Music, particularly when seen against the backdrop of Apple’s previous anticompetitive conduct aimed at Spotify … we cannot stand by as Apple uses the App Store approval process as a weapon to harm competitors.”

Disclaimer: We have no position in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) and have not been compensated for this article.

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