EU Digital Markets Act could force Apple to open its payment system to competitors

This second EU charge against the company could cost Apple up to $36.6 billion

EU Digital Markets Act could force Apple to open its payment system to competitors

In a development mirroring those regarding Apple's control over in-app monetisation, the company has potentially found itself in a position wherein it will be forced to open its physical mobile payment system to competitors.

EU antitrust regulators have charged Apple with restricting the access of rivals to its NFC chip technology, meaning Apple could also be facing a large fine if the EU successfully implements the Digital Markets Act.

Charges and consequences

Valued at up to $36.6 billion – 10 per cent of Apple’s global turnover last year – this would be the second EU charge against the company. However, Apple could send a written response before a decision is reached by the European Commission and request a closed-door hearing, meaning it may be upwards of a year before the conclusion of the charge.

"Apple Pay is only one of many options available to European consumers for making payments, and has ensured equal access to NFC while setting industry-leading standards for privacy and security," Apple has defended.

The anti-competitive practices by Apple began in 2015, according to the charge, as this was when Apple Pay first launched.

"We have indications that Apple restricted third-party access to key technology necessary to develop rival mobile wallet solutions on Apple's devices," said EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager.

"In our statement of objections, we preliminarily found that Apple may have restricted competition, to the benefit of its own solution Apple Pay."

Mobile games analyst Eric Seufert recently gave his thoughts on how big tech platforms including Apple will be forced to adapt to the Digital Markets Act during the Google X Deconstructor of Fun Instanbul Gaming Event. Additionally, in the ongoing Apple vs Epic Games legal dispute surrounding App Store policies, Roblox voiced its support for Apple last month after Apple was granted permission to use outside arguments to support its case.

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Aaron is the News Editor at and has an honours degree in Creative Writing.
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