Following Europe's Footsteps, Japan Will Pass Antitrust Bill to Limit Control of Apple and Google

Recently, Europe has taken a major step by passing the Digital Markets Act (DMA) which aims to prevent large technology companies such as Apple and Google from dominating digital markets. Now, Japan looks set to follow in those footsteps with plans to pass similar legislation that would limit the control of the two tech giants.

European Action Against Digital Monopolies

Before we discuss Japan's steps, let's first understand what Europe has done. The European Union has opened investigations into Apple, Google, and Meta in the first cases under the DMA (Digital Markets Act) which just came into force this month. DMA is designed to stop large technology companies from monopolizing digital markets which could ultimately harm consumers and smaller competitors.

Japan's Steps, Antimonopoly Law Proposal

On May 25, 2024, Japan announced its plans to pass antitrust laws that would limit the control of large platforms such as Apple and Google. This step follows in the footsteps of the European Union which has implemented similar changes through the Digital Markets Act in 27 member countries.

According to recent reports, Japan plans to increase fines for antitrust violations to 30% of companies' annual revenues if they violate proposed new regulations on app store monopolies. This proposal is still in the draft stage, but shows Japan's seriousness in addressing the issue of market domination by large technology companies.

Similarities to Europe's Digital Markets Act

This Japanese antitrust law is in line with the Digital Markets Act (DMA) implemented in the European Union. DMA forces large platforms to open access to third-party app stores and allow alternative payment methods. Thus, application developers will have a greater opportunity to compete fairly and earn more income from their applications.

Changes in the Technology Industry

If this law passes, its impact on the technology industry could be significant. Apple and Google may have to change their business models in Japan, which could include allowing third-party app stores and alternative payment methods in their ecosystems. This would be a big change, considering that both companies have had tight control over the distribution of their applications and services.

Towards Fairer Markets

For consumers, this move could mean more choice and control over the digital services they use. With healthier competition in the market, consumers can enjoy more competitive prices, faster innovation and better service.

Positive Impact for Application Developers

This law will provide benefits to app developers in Japan. With these rules in place, developers can compete fairly and earn more revenue from their apps. So far, the control held by Apple and Google has made application prices more expensive. This antitrust law will help reduce this imbalance and encourage innovation in the Japanese app market

Conclusion

Japan's move to pass antitrust laws is in line with global efforts to create a fairer and more competitive environment for app developers and consumers. By expanding access to third-party app stores and allowing alternative payment methods, Japan hopes to reduce the dominance of Apple and Google and benefit the country's entire app ecosystem.

With these regulatory changes, we all hope that a digital ecosystem that is more open, fair and innovative will be created. This is a significant step forward towards creating a healthier and more competitive market, where companies large and small can thrive while providing the best value for consumers.

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