The US claims Apple monopolizes the smartphone market.

Apple was accused of abusing its smartphone monopoly by the US government in a landmark lawsuit. The Justice Department and 16 states sued the internet giant on Thursday, claiming it restricts apps that could help users switch to cheaper Android phones. The US government's first historic monopoly abuse prosecution against Apple follows a series of huge tech regulation trials.

US attorney general Merrick Garland said: “We allege that Apple has maintained monopoly power in the smartphone market, not simply by staying ahead of the competition on the merits, but by violating federal antitrust law. “If left unchallenged, Apple will only strengthen its smartphone monopoly.” Apple said the lawsuit risked the US government interfering in technology development and would oppose it.

“If successful, [this lawsuit] would hinder our ability to create the kind of technology people expect from Apple – where hardware, software, and services intersect. “It would also set a dangerous precedent, allowing government to design people's technology. We will fiercely fight this action because it is erroneous on the facts and law.”

The US allegations allege that Apple intentionally undermines software and accessories that would level the playing field for iPhones and Android devices. This includes not making iMessage compatible with Android phones and blocking WhatsApp from delivering text messages.

Many Android smartphone users face social shame and marginalization when messaging, according to the Justice Department's case. It said: “Apple has made cross-platform messaging worse, less innovative, and less secure for users so that its customers must keep buying iPhones.”

The lawsuit says that Apple has banned "super apps," which allow users to perform many functions in one app, for fear that their acceptance would reduce iPhone dependence and make device switching easier.

Apple executive reportedly stated: "Imagine a working Android for $25 at a garage sale..." Your cloud computing equipment is solid. Imagine how many cases like that exist.” Recent US regulator lawsuits against Google, Meta, and Amazon were predicted, as was the Apple case.

The corporation is also under examination in Europe, which has recently passed regulations to limit big tech. Bloomberg reported Thursday that the EU will launch Digital Markets Act probes into Apple and Google in the coming days.

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