Apple Hits Back Over Streaming Claims by Spotify

On Friday, Apple Inc came out fighting against the claims of Spotify that the tech giant based in the U.S. hurt competition in the music streaming industry through rejecting an update to the iPhone app of the Swedish music service.

The companies have battled head to head for customers in the music streaming business since Apple Music launched last year in over 100 countries.

The entrance of Apple into the field brought about concerns from companies in the music streaming industry like Spotify, which have said the cut of 30% Apple takes of subscriptions on its App Store are giving its own music service an additional unfair advantage.

Legal counsel for Spotify confirmed the concerns in a letter sent to Apple that was revealed on Thursday in which he protested Apple’s rejection of Spotify’s most recent version of its app.

However, Apple counsel countered the letter by saying that the company is deserving of a percentage from transactions in its App Store due to the work it does operating it.

Apple lawyers insist that the company was treating Sweden-based Spotify the same it would any of the other app makers.

Spotify legal counsel claims that the rejection by Apply of the new app from Spotify raised very serious claims under the U.S. as well as European competition laws and that the move caused grave harm to not just Spotify but its clients as well.

A spokesperson for Spotify confirmed that the report of the exchange of letters was accurate. However, an Apple spokesperson did not comment.

Launched more than 10 years ago, Spotify is the biggest paid music streaming business in the world with close to 30 million users who play across 59 markets. Apple Music has just 13 million users.

Companies like Spotify have tried to sidestep the App Store percentage taken by encouraging their clients to sign up online for their service.

Apple forbids its developers from promoting different payment methods within its apps.

Late in May, Spotify sent a version of its latest app that removed the purchase feature, which triggers the cut Apple takes and included a feature for account sign-up that violated the rules of Apple, said Apple’s legal counsel.

Thus, Apple rejected that app and told Spotify it had to submit another one but the latest version contained the same problems.

The field of music streaming is highly crowded. YouTube and Google Music are also competing with Apple Music and Spotify to attract music lovers prepared to pay to listen to music, as do Tidal by Jay Z and Pandora Media.

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