July 21, 2024
Lawsuit Claims Apple's Anti-Competitive Practices
Latest Cryptocurrency News

Consumers Sue Apple Alleging Anti-Competitive Tactics in P2P Payment Space

Consumers dissatisfied with Apple have brought a class-action lawsuit against the tech company, accusing it of conspiring to limit peer-to-peer (P2P) payment choices on its devices and blocking crypto technology from iOS payment apps. According to the Nov. 17 complaint filed in a California District Court, the lawsuit alleges that Apple engaged in anti-competitive agreements with PayPal’s Venmo and Block’s Cash App, restricting the utilization of decentralized cryptocurrency technology in payment apps. This purportedly led to users facing escalating prices.

The filing asserts that these agreements limit feature competition—and the price competition that would flow from it—marketwide, including by barring the incorporation of decentralized cryptocurrency technology within existing or new iOS peer-to-peer payment apps.

The plaintiffs also argue that Apple uses both tech rules and contracts, like App Store control through hardware and restrictions on web browsers, to control all apps on iPhones and iPads.

The lawsuit contends that Apple imposes conditions on new iOS P2P payment apps, compelling them to exclude crypto as a prerequisite for market entry. The plaintiffs, identifying themselves as customers affected by inflated fees due to Apple’s trade restraints in the iOS P2P payment market, seek compensation for excessive fees and overcharging. Additionally, they request injunctive relief to prevent Apple from continuing to engage in anti-competitive agreements that limit competitors and potential new participants in the iOS P2P payment market.

The 58-page filing provides a comprehensive overview of the evolution of peer-to-peer payment apps, decentralized cryptocurrencies, and Apple’s foray into this market.

In a related development, in April, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that Apple had violated California’s competition laws by prohibiting apps from directing users to payment solutions not linked to Apple.

Image by freepik

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