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  • Germany's Federal Cartel Office Investigating Apple's Audiobook Deal with Amazon


    Apple’s deal for purchasing audiobooks from Amazon is sparking the interest of Germany’s Federal Cartel Office, as they are investigating the details of the deal given the companies’ market leading positions. In a statement obtained by Reuters, the FCO pointed out that Apple has a long-term agreement to buy audiobooks from Amazon’s Audible service, which it then offers via the iTunes Store.

    It should be noted that the agency hasn’t immediately suggested that there is any malicious behavior that is occurring but did note that both Apple and Amazon do have a “strong position” in the German digital audiobook market that are notable enough to look into. The FCO head, Andreas Mundt, had the following to say regarding the matter:

    Therefore, we feel compelled to examine the agreement between these two competitors in the audiobooks in more detail.
    The move as a whole doesn’t come as too much of a surprise as European competition monitors have been scrutinizing a number of major American tech companies in the past few years including Apple. Back in August for example, Apple was cleared of concerns that it might be colluding with record labels to undermine free music streaming services. Apple was also previously accused of colluding with book publishers against Amazon in the realm of e-books. In the US, this matter even went as far as reaching the Supreme Court with Apple currently hoping to avoid paying a $450 million settlement.

    We’ll have to wait and see what the FCO determines in the case of audiobooks in Germany. Hopefully this is another situation where Apple can come out ahead.

    Source: Reuters via AppleInsider
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Germany's Federal Cartel Office Investigating Apple's Audiobook Deal with Amazon started by Akshay Masand View original post