Google and Apple face an anticompetitive lawsuit in Mexico

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A 3D printed Google logo is placed on the Apple Macbook in this illustration taken April 12, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

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MEXICO CITY, Sept 9 (Reuters) – Apple (AAPL.O) and Alphabet (GOOGL.O) Google are facing an antitrust probe in Mexico after the country’s former telecoms chief filed a complaint, a he said in a statement on Twitter on Friday.

The complaint was filed yesterday with the IFT, Mexico’s telecommunications regulator, by Mony de Swaan Addati, who once headed the former telecommunications federation that was later replaced by the IFT.

Its complaint accuses Apple and Google of “completely inhibiting competition” by “taking advantage of their monopoly in app stores to tie the use of their own payment processing systems to in-app purchases.”

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In his online statement, de Swaan Addati said Google’s Play Store and Apple’s store were charging a 15-20% commission, forcing price inflation.

Google declined to comment. Apple and IFT were not immediately available for comment.

A flurry of lawsuits and complaints challenging the pair’s app store rules in various countries over the past few years has led Google to lower fees and Apple to relax rules, but some app developers and other critics say more changes are needed.

De Swaan Addati added that the Mexican competition regulator had rejected his request to open an investigation into the companies, prompting him to take his case to the IFT.

“I have full confidence that (the IFT) will investigate and exercise its powers – in accordance with international best practice – so that these companies stop abusing their market power to the detriment of developers and consumers,” he said. he declares.

According to data firm Statista, more than 30 million smartphones were expected to be sold in Mexico last year.

Google’s Android has the largest market share in Mexico with a penetration of 77%, according to the latest data from Statcounter.

Apple is under scrutiny elsewhere in the region, with Brazilian regulators banning the sale of chargerless iPhones earlier this week. Read more .

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Reporting by Isabel Woodford and Sarah Morland; edited by Richard Pullin

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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