Facebook, Apple chiefs unleash barbs as App Store feud heats up

Facebook, Apple chiefs unleash barbs as App Store feud heats up


San Francisco: The quarrel between the tech giants intensified on Thursday, as Apple’s CEO hinted that Facebook’s business model has fueled disinformation and violence, and the social network is reportedly preparing to file an antitrust lawsuit against Apple.

“As we have said repeatedly, we believe Apple is behaving anti-competitively by using their control of the App Store to benefit their bottom line at the expense of app developers and small businesses,” Facebook told AFP, declining to confirm or deny the report.

Apple did not reply to a request for comment, but chief executive Tim Cook seemed to take aim at Facebook when he blasted “disinformation and conspiracy theories juiced by algorithms” during a virtual data privacy conference in Brussels on Thursday, according to reports by CNBC and the Wall Street Journal.

Cook did not mention Facebook by name, but skewered business models built on targeted advertising, which accounts for most of the social network’s revenue, media reports indicated.

“If a business is built on misleading users, on data exploitation, on choices that are no choices at all, it does not deserve our praise,” Cook was quoted as saying.

To quote Cooke, “If a company is based on misleading users, data development, and no choice at all, it is not worthy of our praise.”

According to media reports, he believes that allowing online platforms to act as a stage for extremists or to cast doubt on life-saving vaccines will lead to “polarization, loss of trust and, yes, violence.”

These technology giants have been in conflict over the latest version of Apple’s iOS operating software, which includes a transparent tracking function, which Facebook claims will weaken its ability to provide targeted advertising.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (Mark Zuckerberg) said in an earnings conference call with investors on Wednesday that Apple is becoming one of the company’s biggest competitors.

“Apple has every incentive to use their dominant platform position to interfere with how our apps and other apps work, which they regularly do to preference their own,” Zuckerberg said.

“Apple may say that they’re doing this to help people but the moves clearly track their competitive interests.”

Facebook is not alone in its complaints about how Apple runs the App Store, where it collects 30 percent of sales or subscription fees from third-party offerings.

Some developers say that Apple accounts for a large portion of revenue and has strict policies that may hinder competitive services. Fortnite maker Epic Games has taken Apple to court.

Apple claims that its App Store has brought in billions of dollars in revenue for independent developers, and its approach is reasonable compared to other digital markets.

Apple still makes most of the profits from iPhone sales, but sells games, TV shows, music, and more products to people dedicated to its devices.

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