The New York Times says the United States Department of Justice has reached “late stages” of its monopoly investigation of Apple and that a comprehensive antitrust case against Apple could be filed by the Justice Department in the first half of 2024.
From the article (which requires a subscription to read): Specifically, investigators have examined how the Apple Watch works better with the iPhone than with other brands, as well as how Apple locks competitors out of its iMessage service. They have also scrutinized Apple’s payments system for the iPhone, which blocks other financial firms from offering similar services, these people said.
The Apple suit would likely be even more expansive than previous challenges to the company, attacking its powerful business model that draws together the iPhone with devices like the Apple Watch and services like Apple Pay to attract and keep consumers loyal to its products.
This isn’t Apple’s first brush-up with the DoJ. In 2016, the DoJ asked the Supreme Court to overturn an appeals court ruling that had favored Apple over Samsung in smartphone patent litigation, and asked that it return the case to the trial court for more litigation. In 2018 the DoJ investigated Apple over the “Batterygate” lawsuit. In 2021 the DoJ investigated complaints from developers over Apple’s “Sign in with Apple” option. And the DoJ has said it may investigate Apple over its battle with the makers of the Beeper Mini app.