The U.S. Department of Justice has filed a new lawsuit against Apple, accusing it of monopolizing the smartphone market and suppressing competition. The tech giant, the lawsuit says, abused control of the iPhone app store to “tie” developers and customers to it, and acted illegally, preventing the emergence of third-party apps and trying to make competitors’ products less attractive.

Apple denies the accusations and is preparing for a long and bitter legal battle. This isn’t the first time the company has fended off complaints about actions that violate antitrust laws, but this time it seems to be more serious than usual. The lawsuit is 88 pages long, and it looks at 5 industries where Apple allegedly abused its monopoly.

Apple has maintained its monopoly position in the smartphone market, not just outperforming its competitors in substance, but also in violation of federal antitrust laws.

Among the sins of the “apple” giant mentioned by US Attorney General Merrick Garland are obstructing the development of streaming applications for fear that they will reduce the incentive for users to stay with the iPhone; deliberate complication of connecting the iPhone to competitors’ smartwatches; blocking banks and other financial institutions from accessing their tap-to-pay technology, which brings the company billions in commissions from processing transactions through Apple Pay, etc.

Apple has traditionally stated that all this is not true, that customers choose the company’s products because using them makes them happy, and US law allows them to freely choose business partners. Apple said it would ask the court to dismiss the lawsuit, and if considered, it hopes to win. It is difficult to predict what the court’s decision will be, and it will not appear soon – however, against the background of the news of the federal lawsuit, Apple shares fell by more than 4%. The company now owns more than 70% of the smartphone market in the United States, and more than 20% of the global market – where in 2023, for the first time in 13 years, Apple overtook Samsung.

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