The European Commission today named six tech giants whose market power it intends to control with its Digital Markets Act (DMA) – a landmark pro-competitive regulation designed to ensure a fair and open digital marketplace for both businesses and consumers.
The six companies are considered the “gatekeepers” of the EU’s digital market. This means that their core platform services: are active in at least three Member States; Gather over 45 million end users per month and over 10,000 business users per year. and have annual sales of at least €7.5 billion or a market capitalization of at least €75 million.
Here are the common culprits:
Specifically, the EU has designated 22 central gatekeeper platform services as the subject of its new strict rules. These are:
- alphabet: Chrome, Android, YouTube, Google Search, Chrome, Google Maps, Google Play, Google Shopping and Google Ads.
- Amazon: Amazon Marketplace and Amazon Ads.
- Apple: Safari, iOS and App Store.
- ByteDance: Tick Tock.
- Meta: Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, Meta Marketplace and Meta Ads.
- Microsoft: LinkedIn and Windows PC operating system.
There are several do’s and don’ts that must be followed for the above services. For example, they must allow consumers to uninstall pre-installed apps and replace them with third-party apps.
Another important provision is to allow business users to advertise and sell their products on their own website. The selected 22 are also prohibited from tracking users outside of their platforms for targeted advertising purposes unless prior consent has been given.
“More choice for consumers, fewer barriers for smaller competitors.
Gatekeepers have six months to comply with the DMA’s requirements. Failure to comply can result in fines of up to 10% of the company’s total worldwide turnover. For repeated breaches, fines can reach up to 20% of the above amount, with the Commission reserving the right to take additional measures, such as forcing a gatekeeper to sell part of its business.
Note that the gatekeeper list is open and companies can be added or removed.
“More choice for consumers, fewer obstacles for smaller competitors: the DMA will open the gates to the internet,” said Thierry Breton, Commissioner for the Internal Market. “With today’s naming, we’re finally reining in the economic power of six gatekeepers, giving consumers more choice, and creating new opportunities for smaller innovative technology companies through things like interoperability, sideloading, real-time data portability, and fairness.”