Exclusive: Apple faces EU antitrust charge on Spotify complaint - sources


FILE PHOTO: An Apple logo hangs above the entrance to the Apple store on 5th Avenue in the Manhattan borough of New York City, July 21, 2015. REUTERS/Mike Segar/File Photo/File Photo

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - IPhone maker Apple could face an EU antitrust charge sheet in the coming weeks following a 2019 complaint by music streaming service Spotify, two people familiar with the matter said.

The charge could force changes to Apple's lucrative business model, they said.

The European Commission could send the statement of objections setting out suspected violations of the bloc's antitrust rules to Apple before the summer, one of the people said.

The case is one of four opened by the EU competition enforcer into Apple in June last year. The EU charge sheet usually indicates whether a fine is merited and what companies have to do to halt anti-competitive practices.

The Commission declined to comment.

Apple was not immediately available to comment. It has said its App Store helped Spotify to benefit from hundreds of millions of app downloads to become Europe's largest music streaming service.

Spotify in its 2019 complaint to the Commission said Apple unfairly restricts rivals to its own music steaming service Apple Music and also protested against the 30% fee levied on app developers to use Apple's in-app purchase system (IAP).

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee, editing by Sabine Siebold and Susan Fenton)

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