It’s getting real in the these music streaming service streets. Tidal, Spotify, Rdio, Pandora, and everybody else are all competing for the top spot but Apple came into the game to conquer. We reported a while back that the FTC was looking into some alleged shady practices by Apple but at that point there wasn’t anything concrete. The FTC has now launched an investigation into Apple’s music streaming services and how they deal with competition in regard to their App Store. According to The Verge, the investigation targets Apple’s 30 percent fee charged to subscription services who sign up new users through the App Store.
The FTC is turning up the heat up on Apple to find out if the tech juggernaut pressured labels to put an end to Spotify’s free streaming tier. There are even rumors that subpoenas have already been issued to music streaming services to gather information to see if Apple was playing the gangster role behind closed doors.
The FTC is coming after Apple because the company sits in a unique position after joining the music streaming world. Apple hosts other music streaming services via it’s App Store and products and there are several rules in place that these music streaming companies have to follow in order to have their services available via Apple’s App store. From the 30 percent fee Apple charges on any sale by a subscription service that signs up users trough their iOS, or Apple forcing these companies to use Apple’s API, and by putting no discount restrictions on Spotify, Tidal, Rdio, and the other music streaming services, Apple is running the game.
In a nutshell, it appears as if Apple is making, baking, and selling the Apple pie and not giving everyone else a good slice of it. We will watch this and keep you posted.