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Germany: ZAW announces complaint against Apple for violating antitrust law with app tracking transparency program

The German Advertising Federation ('ZAW') announced, on 26 April 2021, that central associations of the media, internet and advertising industries had filed a complaint against Apple Inc. with the Federal Cartel Office claiming that the company is abusing its market power and violating antitrust law with its app tracking transparency ('ATT') program. In particular, ZAW highlighted that Apple does not want to approve apps without ATT, a program that requires app providers to display an opt-in window by default when user data is to be processed.

ZAW noted that these measures effectively allow Apple to exclude all competitors from processing commercially relevant data in the Apple ecosystem. Furthermore, the ZAW observed that the company has excluded its own advertising services from the planned changes and collecting considerable amounts of user data itself.

As a result, ZAW outlined that the view of the associations, which is that the ATT program is an attempt to make it more difficult for the advertising industry to access data relevant to competition

You can read the press release, only available in German, here.