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Margrethe Vestager EU Competition-Commissioner
MARGRETHE VESTAGER: “Our concerns relate to Apple’s decision to block access to the NFC technology for payment purposes and use it solely for its own mobile wallet, Apple Pay” Image: © European Union, 2022

The European Commission[1] has sent an official statement of objections to Apple laying out the reasons why it believes the company has “abused its dominant position in markets for mobile wallets on iOS devices” and is restricting competition by limiting third-party access to its NFC chip technology.

The statement of objections is a formal step in the ongoing antitrust investigation into Apple’s practices[2] that the Commission launched in June 2020 and “takes issue only with the access to NFC input by third-party developers of mobile wallets for payments in stores”, the Commission says.

The formal statement “does not prejudge the outcome of an investigation”, but if the charges relating to Apple’s conduct are confirmed it “would infringe Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) that prohibits the abuse of a dominant market position,” the Commission adds.

Specific concerns

“Our concerns relate to Apple’s decision to block access to the NFC technology for payment purposes and use it solely for its own mobile wallet, Apple Pay,” the EU’s competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager explains.

“As a result, users of Apple devices can only pay with the ‘tap and go’ function using Apple Pay and not with other wallets. This is because competing wallet developers need access to the NFC on Apple devices to reach Apple users.

“Developing a mobile payment application is costly. Investment may only be worth it if developers can reach both Apple and Android customers.

“Evidence on our file indicates that some developers did not go ahead

Read more from our friends at NFC World

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currensceneFLOGO WHTsquareThough not the oldest form of currency, some form of shell money appears to have been found on almost every continent. The shell most widely used worldwide as currency was the shell of Cypraea moneta, the money cowry.

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