Monopoly

Will Oremus has written a long article on OneZero (Medium paywall) that discusses whether Apple is an illegal monopoly or not.

Apple doesn’t allow apps to offer alternative payment methods and …

To tighten its grip, Apple prohibits the affected apps from even telling users how they can pay their creators directly.

Is Android an alternative?

Yes, Android offers an alternative. Yet with iOS users accounting for a majority of all mobile app revenues in the United States, developers have little choice but to create software for Apple’s products. “If you want to publish modern software, it’s essentially suicide not to have a presence on the iPhone,” Hansson told OneZero.

This is what keeps me from getting Apple products (apart from the price):

In reality, Apple has built its empire on customer lock-in: making its own gadgets and services work seamlessly with one another, but not with those of rival companies.

For example, I couldn’t use my Samsung Galaxy Watch with an iPhone to the extent that I could with my Xiaomi smartphone. If I had an iPhone, I would have to get an Apple Watch if I wanted to have a smartwatch.

I’m pretty sure Apple is abusing its monopoly, but Tim Cook disagrees:

By December, Cook seemed to be hedging his bets. While maintaining that Apple isn’t a monopoly, he mused in an interview that “a monopoly by itself isn’t bad if it’s not abused.” He went on, “The question for those companies is, do they abuse it? And that is for regulators to decide, not for me to decide.”

DHH, CTO of BaseCamp, tweets the following:

Google is not a search engine, it’s an ad engine. You search to find stuff, they respond with a full page ad. This is so ludicrously user hostile that it’s only tenable when you operate a monopoly. Break. Them. Up.

Later he adds:

This is what monopoly abuse looks like in the age of surveillance capitalism. Google are able to raise the cognitive price on users because they’ve cornered the market. If they were not the dominant entrance, they’d never be able to get away with this.

Previously, Jason Fried, CEO of BaseCamp, already tweeted, that BaseCamp needs to buy ads on Google just to appear on top of the page, when someone googles for their company - above competitors who place ads on searches for BaseCamp.

Just another case of Google and it’s monopoly. Check out alternatives.

Jan-Lukas Else
20 years old student who writes about everything he cares about.