Apple and Microsoft Avoid Designation as “Gatekeepers” by the European Commission

The European Commission has made a significant decision regarding Apple and Microsoft, stating that the two tech giants will not be categorized as “gatekeepers.” This conclusion comes after four market investigations following the enactment of the Digital Markets Act last year.

The Digital Markets Act aimed to regulate what are known as “Gatekeeper” firms, including Apple, Microsoft, and Amazon. Initially, the European Commission identified 19 platforms that it believed should be considered “Gatekeepers” and subjected to the strictest regulations under the Digital Services Act. However, Apple and Microsoft swiftly appealed the decision, arguing that their services did not possess the size and power necessary to warrant the “gatekeeper” designation under the DMA.

In a statement from the European Commission, it clarified that after a thorough assessment of all arguments, it is no longer convinced that the named services of Apple and Microsoft meet the criteria to be considered gatekeeper services under the DMA. The Commission also emphasized that it will continue to monitor market developments related to these services and that the latest decision does not impact the companies’ other core platform services mentioned in the original decision.

Apple and Microsoft’s spokespeople responded to the decision with their respective statements. An Apple spokesperson highlighted that consumers have access to a wide variety of messaging apps and can easily switch between them. On the other hand, a Microsoft spokesperson expressed their commitment to working with the Commission and the industry to ensure compliance with the DMA for Microsoft’s other designated platforms.

While some may view the Commission’s decision as disappointing, others interpret it as a positive sign. Lazar Radic, an antitrust expert at the International Center for Law and Economics, commended the Commission for considering market realities and not simply labeling iMessage as a “gatekeeper” based solely on quantitative thresholds.

In conclusion, the European Commission’s recent ruling signifies that Apple and Microsoft will not be recognized as “gatekeepers.” This decision marks a significant outcome for the tech giants and raises important discussions about the criteria for labeling companies as gatekeepers under the DMA.





尽管一些人可能认为委员会的决定令人失望,但其他人则将其解读为一个积极的信号。国际法律与经济学中心的反垄断专家Lazar Radic称赞委员会考虑了市场现实,不仅仅基于数量阈值把iMessage称为“守门人”。


1. 数字市场法案 – 欧洲委员会制定的法案,旨在监管数字服务市场中的大型平台,被定义为”守门人”。
2. 守门人 – 在数字市场法案中,指被视为具有影响力、控制力和规模的公司,需要受到严格监管以确保公平竞争。