Match Group Accuses Apple and Google of Threats in Antitrust Hearing

Written by Dominic Whitlock

The antitrust hearing against Apple and Google got underway yesterday, with Match Group’s Chief Legal Officer Jared Sine playing a major role in proceedings.

He joined representatives from Spotify and Tile to testify against the two major marketplaces. Developers have been playing for a long time that the mobile app industry is run by a duopoly which leads to creative restrictions and higher prices for consumers.

Sine explained that the mandatory App Store commission, which equates to 30% of all payments, is the online dating company’s biggest expense. He claimed that over $500 million had been paid out from across the portfolio.

Match Group relies on Apple and Google to distribute its mobile apps to singles so it is forced to pay the fees. Sine added that all developers are afraid of the companies “that can turn [them] off overnight”.

There were also accusations that the technology giants were not doing enough to protect children, by not having no preventative measures in place to stop under-18s registering for dating apps. Match Group was forced to bring in its own safety measures after Apple and Google refused to share the data from their age verification checks.

An incident from a few years ago was recalled, when the team tried to introduce new verification rules for Taiwanese users. However, Apple strongly disagreed with the plans to protect users, despite a similar process already being in place in Japan, and a representative told the CLO that he was lucky they didn’t take all of Match Group’s revenue.

According to Forbes, Sine told the Senate Judiciary Committee: “Apple and Google respond that they built the platforms and should be able to decide what business models they use.

“I submit that the railroad companies built the railroads. The steel companies built the steel mills. The telephone companies built the telephone lines. The creators of all of these incredible innovations each made the same argument at different times. It did not justify a monopoly then, and it should not today.”

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