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Music service Apple is accused of violating antitrust laws

No sooner had Apple to announce its own streaming music service Apple Music, as she’s already been accused of monopoly. In new York and Connecticut is under investigation, the purpose of which is to determine whether the application is a threat to free systems music content distribution.

According Vestifinance, law enforcement officials suggest that the Apple Music service could be created in violation of antitrust laws. Reported on the investigation into one of the world’s largest music publishers, Universal Music Group. This player with the help of lawyers from Hunton & Williams already made a formal appeal to the Antimonopoly bodies, which describes the understanding of the problem. According to UMG, the investigation should confirm or deny the following fact: the music industry will try to oust from the market free and free streaming music services that exist through advertising, such as Spotify or YouTube.

Apple Music is really different from your competitors from the point of view of monetization models. The free subscription does not exist, and only the first three months it is possible within the trial period to use the app with no monthly fee. The subscription costs $10 per month, and in case you join a family plan to listen to six different accounts – $15 a month. The Music will be embedded promotion-Connect page, where you will be free to listen to individual music tracks, but overall, without a subscription, the user on what to expect.

According to the New York Times there are two main variants of collusion in the market. Either Apple is somehow pushed to the representatives of record companies, which is possible, given the popularity and importance of iTunes and music publishers are agreed among themselves, relying on more income in the case of the dominance of Apple Music on the market. Categorically deny in UMG. The company claims that there are no agreements with Apple’s refusal to license tracks for free music service, or some other way to restrict their access to music. Sony Music and Warner Music allegedly also not appropriate agreements with Apple, and between the players such steps are not discussed.

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Antitrust agencies believe that the market has benefited from the diversity. Nowadays people have many options of access to music content, and it is worth fighting for, according to representatives of the Ministry of justice. And most likely, they will pay attention to another statement from UMG: she recognizes that signed contracts for the supply of exclusive content to some partners, but it does so on the basis of their business interests, and not as part of a conspiracy. If Apple will also get some exclusive content, much will depend on its quantity. In the worst case it can actually go about the monopolistic position of the Music.

The Apple Music service will start from 30th of June with the release of iOS updates 8.4. In Russia the basic subscription service, according to some, will cost $ 169 per month.

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