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DOJ Takes Aim at Apple’s Market Hold Hindering Crypto Apps

The U.S. Department of Justice accuses Apple of stifling competition and innovation in the digital marketplace, particularly impacting crypto apps and broader tech innovation.

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), backed by 16 state attorney generals, has launched a formidable legal challenge against Apple Inc., targeting its alleged monopolistic control over the app market. This move, initiated on March 21 in a New Jersey federal court, signals a critical examination of Apple’s dominance in the smartphone industry and its ramifications on competition and technological innovation.

Apple stands accused of leveraging its market position to coerce developers into exclusively using its payment systems, a strategy that, according to the DOJ, not only curtails competition but also hampers innovation across the tech landscape. This case marks a pivotal moment, with the potential to catalyze a more competitive and dynamic digital marketplace, especially for applications related to cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.

The lawsuit zeroes in on Apple’s stringent app store guidelines and developer agreements, which impose restrictive conditions that result in the collection of higher fees and the throttling of innovative endeavors. The “30% Apple tax” — a fee charged for apps and in-app payments for services not created by Apple — is a central point of contention, particularly criticized for its exclusionary impact on crypto-based applications by rendering in-app crypto transactions non-viable or economically unfeasible.

This exclusive financial framework not only limits the scope of available apps on iOS devices but also affects sectors beyond technology, such as financial services, by maintaining a closed ecosystem that benefits Apple at the expense of competitive alternatives. The repercussions of these policies are evident in the constrained functionality of numerous crypto-based apps and the outright removal of features due to non-compliance with Apple’s in-app payment system.

Moreover, Apple’s enforcement of its app store rules has been characterized as arbitrary, with allegations of the company penalizing and restricting developers who embrace disruptive technologies. This approach is seen as a method to safeguard Apple’s monopoly power, to the detriment of a vibrant digital ecosystem that could foster more varied and innovative app offerings.

The DOJ also criticizes Apple’s control over web apps, requiring all iOS web browsers to utilize its WebKit engine, further entrenching its market dominance. Apple’s restrictive practices have led to a call to action from U.S. lawmakers and have raised significant concerns about the future of blockchain and crypto innovations within the U.S. digital economy.

Despite the serious allegations, Apple has vociferously defended its position, asserting that the DOJ’s complaint is flawed both factually and legally. The company argues that the lawsuit sets a dangerous precedent, potentially enabling government overreach into the design and technology of personal devices. Nevertheless, this legal battle comes at a time when global regulatory trends, such as the European Union’s Digital Markets Act, are beginning to challenge Apple’s stringent app store policies, hinting at a potential shift towards a more open and competitive digital market landscape.

Apple’s staunch defense and the subsequent 4% drop in its share price reflect the significant financial and reputational risks involved. This case not only underscores the ongoing debate over the balance between innovation, market control, and consumer protection but also highlights the critical role of regulatory interventions in shaping the future of the digital economy. As the lawsuit progresses, its outcome could herald a new era of digital marketplace dynamics, fostering an environment where innovation and competition flourish.


Greetings, I go by the name of Flavien - a devoted supporter of cryptocurrency and a tech aficionado who has been keeping track of the developments in the world of blockchain and digital currencies since 2019. The potential of decentralized digital currencies to revolutionize our financial systems has captivated me, and I'm constantly exploring the most recent trends and advancements in this ever-evolving industry. As a content creator for Krypto Channel, my aim is to deliver informative and engaging articles that shed light on all aspects of the crypto world. Whether you're a seasoned investor or simply curious about blockchain technology, I am here to keep you updated on the latest happenings and trends. Being part of this lively and dynamic community is an honor, and I am thrilled to share my passion for cryptocurrency and blockchain with all of you.
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