The Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) ruled on Friday that Apple Inc. won its appeal against Britain’s antitrust regulator’s decision to investigate its mobile browser and cloud gaming services.
An investigation was launched by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in November into Apple and Alphabet Inc’s Google dominance in mobile browsers and Apple’s restriction of cloud gaming through its App Store.
According to Apple, the CMA did not have the power to launch such an investigation, since it had done so too late.
According to Apple’s lawyer, Timothy Otti, an investigation into the market should have been initiated last June. At the same time, the CMA published a report on the mobile ecosystem that concluded the two tech giants had an “effective monopoly”.
Apple’s argument was supported by CAT, which stated that the CMA had erred in law by refusing to act at that time in the hope to gain more power.
The CMA expressed disappointment with the decision.
“Today’s decision finds that the CMA’s general ability to refer markets for in-depth scrutiny is materially hampered,” it said.
As a result, the CMA may be unable to investigate and intervene effectively in markets where competition is weak.
As a result of the importance of today’s decision, we will consider our options, including appeals.
Following the ruling, Apple said it “believes in vibrant and competitive markets where innovation thrives.”
“We are pleased with the Competition Appeal Tribunal’s decision and will continue to support developers and provide users with a safe experience,” said the company.