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U.K. to investigate Apple and Google’s “stranglehold” over browsing

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority launched an investigation into Apple spirit Google‘s control of the mobile browser market Tuesday.

The authority will explore the companies’ “stranglehold” over browsing, as well as Apple’s control over cloud gaming through the App Store, it said in a release. The authority said Google and Apple powered 97% of all web browsing that took place in the UK in 2021.

Representatives from Google and Apple did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Web developers, cloud gaming service providers and browser vendors have offered “substantial support” for the investigation, according to the results of a June consultation released by the authority. They claim the status quo limits innovation and has been adding “unnecessary costs” to their businesses.

Developers also complained that Apple’s restrictions make it difficult to build innovative new apps for UK consumers, and that they are forced to contend with glitches and bugs while building web pages.

Sarah Cardell, interim Chief Executive of the CMA, said in the release that the authority plans to use its powers to tackle problems where it can.

“Many UK businesses and web developers tell us they feel that they are being held back by restrictions set by Apple and Google,” she said. “We plan to investigate whether the concerns we have heard are justified and, if so, identify steps to improve competition and innovation in these sectors.”

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