European Commission designates six tech companies as gatekeepers under Digital Markets Act
The European Commission has designated six tech companies, including Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta, and Microsoft, as gatekeepers under the Digital Markets Act (DMA)
The European Commission has designated six major tech companies, including Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta, and Microsoft, as gatekeepers under the Digital Markets Act (DMA). The designation applies to a total of 22 core platform services provided by these companies.
Under the DMA, digital platforms can be designated as gatekeepers if they play a crucial role in connecting businesses and consumers in relation to core platform services. Following a 45-day review process, the Commission confirmed the gatekeeper status for the designated companies.
At the same time, four market investigations have been initiated by the Commission to further examine Microsoft’s and Apple’s claims that some of their core platform services do not qualify as gateways.
The Commission has also concluded that Gmail, Outlook.com, and Samsung internet Browser meet the thresholds set by the DMA to qualify as gatekeepers. However, Alphabet, Microsoft, and Samsung provided valid arguments demonstrating that these services do not act as gateways for the specified core platform services. Consequently, the Commission decided not to designate these services as core platform services, meaning that Samsung is not designated as a gatekeeper for any core platform service.
Source: European Commission
Designated gatekeepers now have six months to ensure compliance with the DMA’s obligations. Gatekeepers are granted six months to submit a detailed compliance report outlining their adherence to the DMA’s obligations. In cases where a gatekeeper fails to meet DMA requirements, the Commission has the authority to impose fines of up to 10% of the company’s total worldwide turnover and up to 20% in cases of repeated infringement. Additionally, the Commission can introduce further remedies, such as mandating the sale of certain business parts or prohibiting gatekeepers from acquiring additional services related to systemic non-compliance.
Source: European Commission
Why does this matter?
The DMA is aimed at preventing gatekeepers from imposing unfair conditions on businesses and end users, and ensuring open and competitive digital markets. It works in conjunction with the Digital Services Act, proposed in December 2020, which addresses the negative consequences stemming from the behaviours of online platforms acting as digital gatekeepers to the EU single market. The DMA came into effect in November 2022 and has been applied since May 2023.