The European Commission appoints six tech companies as gatekeepers. Certain applications of these companies will, therefore, have to comply with the Digital Markets Act (DMA) from spring 2024.
The following companies were designated as gatekeepers by the European Commission today: Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta and Microsoft.
Amazon does not talk its way out of designation
The specification of products subject to the DMA did not include iMessage and Bing (for now). Apple and Microsoft, the tech companies behind the products, entered talks with European regulators earlier this year to argue why these products should not be the subject of the DMA.
The European Commission says it is still assessing for both services whether it is necessary to include them in the DMA. The investigations will be completed within a maximum of five months. The same applies to the iPadOS operating system, for which the Commission still has a year to conduct the investigation.
Amazon also attempted with the European regulators earlier on, the company’s CEO citing problems with “overlapping and conflicting laws of national competition authorities.” However, Amazon was nevertheless appointed as a gatekeeper by the European Commission.
In the announcement, the European Commission pointed out that 22 services from these six companies must comply with the legislation. They are social media companies TikTok, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. From Facebook, the messaging service Messenger also becomes subject to the DMA, as does the service WhatsApp, which is also part of Meta. YouTube will be housed in the video sharing category but is also subject to legislation.
Furthermore, the advertising branches of Google, Amazon and Meta will have to comply, as will the browsers Chrome and Safari, the search engine Google Search and the operating systems Android, iOS and Windows. The service to download applications from Apple and Google are also written down, as are the online sales platforms of Google, Meta and Amazon.
Finally, the Commission indicates that Gmail, Outlook.com and Samsung Internet Browser are not part of the DMA. This assessment follows because the underlying companies would have provided sufficient evidence to show that these services should be excluded.
Fines possible from March 6, 2024
The six-month transition period begins today. This gives the companies designated as gatekeepers today until March 6, 2024, to bring their services into compliance.