Tech giants such as Google and Apple may have to abide by new regulations designed for them to retain some of their overwhelming power in the UK.
A draft legislation – the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers bill – has been sent to the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and overwatch big tech companies which generate an annual UK turnover of £1bn, or £25bn worldwide, operating within the country.
The Financial Times confirmed the new regulation which would target firms with “entrenched power” in one or more digital markets and if found in breach of any of the new guidelines, the company offended may have to pay a fine equal to 10% of their global revenue.
The Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers bill is due to be published this week and will be introduced to Parliament to be decided upon a date for its integration.
The UK has been in battles with big tech firms for quite some time now over their significant power, privacy settings, antitrust rules and so forth, with the US also facing similar battles.
The CMA has also recently been embroiled in a transaction policy battle with Google, with the regulator raising concerns over the tech giant’s payment processors on Google Play which may lead to higher prices and reduced customer choice.
After the investigation, Google introduced new proposals to its gaming app, most notably allowing users the opportunity to select payment methods of their choosing between Google Play billing or an alternative ‘user choice billing’.
“Google’s complete control over in-app payments raised concerns this unfairly restricted app developers — by forcing them to use Google Play’s billing system — putting distance between them and their customers and reducing competition, to the detriment of Google Play users,” said Ann Pope, CMA Antitrust Director.
Furthermore, if the proposal proves successful, Google Play users will be able to benefit from new offers and in-app deals that are not obtainable under current Google Play rules.