The Antitrust Week In Review
Here are some of the developments in antitrust news this past week that we found interesting and are following.
Apple Cracks Down on Apps That Fight iPhone Addiction. They all tell a similar story: They ran apps that helped people limit the time they and their children spent on iPhones. Then Apple created its own screen-time tracker. And then Apple made staying in business very, very difficult. Over the past year, Apple has removed or restricted at least 11 of the 17 most downloaded screen-time and parental-control apps, according to an analysis by The New York Times and Sensor Tower, an app-data firm. On Thursday, two of the most popular parental-control apps, Kidslox and Qustodio, filed a complaint with the European Union’s competition office.
Surescripts faces U.S. antitrust lawsuit over electronic prescription monopoly. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission filed an antitrust lawsuit against the health information network Surescripts on Wednesday, accusing them of using illegal means to maintain monopolies over two portions of the electronic prescribing market. Surescripts said in a statement that it was “disappointed” by the lawsuit and had been cooperating with the agency. The FTC accused Surescripts, which provides a range of electronic records and prescribing services to doctors, pharmacists and patients, of requiring long-term exclusivity from customers and punishing them with high prices if they bought some prescriptions from another company.
T Mobile, Sprint face new FCC questions on tie-up. T-Mobile US Inc and Sprint Corp executives this week urged senior U.S. regulators to approve the proposed tie-up, saying the combined company would have the incentive to slash prices, according to a filing on Thursday. At the meeting Wednesday, Federal Communications Commission officials questioned company executives about such issues as “submitted economic modeling, including how it is conservative in measuring benefits and pricing constraints,” according to a filing with the FCC from a lawyer for the companies. “They also discussed their pricing commitments as well as the incentives for New T-Mobile to aggressively lower prices,” the letter said.