France’s antitrust watchdog has issued a statement of objection against Apple, raising concerns that the tech giant may have violated regulations related to the use of iPhone user data for advertising purposes. The watchdog is worried that Apple could be abusing its dominant position by implementing discriminatory and non-transparent conditions for using user data in advertising. This comes after four French online advertising industry groups filed an antitrust complaint in 2020, stating that changes made by Apple to privacy features negatively impacted publishers’ revenues, and Apple’s own apps did not include the same opt-in mechanism as third-party developers. Apple has denied the allegation, stating that its apps do not track or share user data for targeted advertising or advertising measurement purposes. The statement of objection triggers an antitrust procedure, during which Apple will be able to present its perspective to the watchdog.

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