Spotify is still angry at Apple

This might have something to do with that new Apple One bundle.

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Jessica Conditt
September 15, 2020 3:15 PM
Headphones are seen in front of a logo of online music streaming service Spotify in this illustration picture taken in Strasbourg, February 18, 2014. Spotify is recruiting a U.S. financial reporting specialist, adding to speculation that the Swedish start-up is preparing for a share listing, which one banker said could value the firm at as much as $8 billion. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann (FRANCE - Tags: BUSINESS ENTERTAINMENT LOGO)
Christian Hartmann / reuters

Less than an hour after the end of Apple’s big Watch event today, Spotify sent out a statement reiterating its distrust and disappointment in Apple, again accusing the company of anticompetitive practices. Here’s the full message from Spotify:

"Once again, Apple is using its dominant position and unfair practices to disadvantage competitors and deprive consumers by favoring its own services. We call on competition authorities to act urgently to restrict Apple's anti-competitive behavior, which if left unchecked, will cause irreparable harm to the developer community and threaten our collective freedoms to listen, learn, create, and connect."

Spotify didn’t specify which aspect of Apple’s event prompted this response, though one bit of news stands out as a likely candidate. The Apple One bundle announced today sells Apple Arcade, TV+, iCloud access and — most notably — Music for $15 per month. This is a potential threat to Spotify, which also operates a music app on iOS.

For more than a year, Spotify has been making noise about Apple’s unchecked power over the App Store, and in March 2019, it filed a complaint against Apple with the European Commission. Spotify claims Apple’s practice of taking 30 percent of an app’s revenue is unjustified, and says the company operates as a monopoly on iOS.

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This echoes similar complaints made by Microsoft and Epic Games, both of whom have condemned Apple’s anticompetitive practices in recent months. Epic CEO Tim Sweeney has long been opposed to Apple’s — and Google’s, and Valve’s — 30 percent revenue cut. In August, Epic sued Apple in dramatic fashion, parodying the company’s iconic 1984 ad and urging its own Fortnite players to get behind the lawsuit. Epic and Apple have been suing each other and undermining each other’s services since then.

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