Remember the new US antitrust bill that has got Apple, Google, and other tech companies in the industry ranting, well its one step closer to become reality. The tech antitrust bill has been approved by lawmakers today.
After hours of long debate, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the American Innovation and Choice online Act by 16-6 vote. But, who’ll suffer most if this bill gets passed as law?
For those who don’t know, the bill has the potential of banning big tech platforms from putting their products and services first ahead of competitions. And this means almost everyone will be affected from users, customers to tech companies. How so?
For tech companies, if this bill gets passed as law, the likes of Amazon would not be able to favor its products ahead of products from other brands in its market place. It also means, services offered by Apple won’t be first choice for Apple iPhone and iPad users. Same rules applies to Google and other companies.
Apple and Google has hit back at this antitrust bill. Apple pointing security and user privacy as major concern. According to Apple, a part of the new antitrust bill brings the possibility for iPhone and iPad users to download apps and games outside the Apple App store.
If this happens, Apple cannot fully guarantee the safety of such apps and how it affects users. So technically, one can say Apple’s interest is on users even though we know the company will be missing the 30% developer commission from its App store developers.
Google on the other hand is concerned about the efficiency of its products. Google’s president of global affairs and chief legal officer, Kent Walker said that Google search, Google Maps, and Gmail will be less useful to user if this bill turns law.
Since Google sync all its products, its easer for the company to collect data and make all apps work in its ecosystem. But, if third party was to come into play, it would be difficult for Google products to work effectively. Also, this might require Google to give out collected data to third party.
Just like Apple, the concern of Google appears to also be the user. Even though we know that Google might miss out on big chunk of advertiser money if the company losses part of its ecosystem.
Other company such as NetChoice has also voiced out their concern. The complaint been this bill is not been critically looked at and it seems some lawmakers are in a hurry to just pass the bill without looking at the potential downside.
While it’s easy to say that these tech companies means well for users, it’s also safe to say that these companies are fighting for themselves and how to make more money.
Maybe the bill is been rushed, maybe tech companies really have the interest of its users at heart, or maybe these companies just want to keep their share of the market and keep competition at bay. Whatever the case might be, the new antitrust bill affects everyone.
Although the new bill still has a long way to go before it becomes law, it’s fair that these companies starts crying out now. Guess we’ll know the final outcome of this bill in coming months.