The European Union (EU) has identified six major technology companies it seeks to regulate under the new Digital Markets Act (DMA). The “gatekeepers” list includes Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta, and Microsoft.
The DMA aims to ensure fair competition within the digital market space by implementing specific rules for platforms designated as “core platform services”. The Commission has identified 22 such services distributed among the six tech giants.
Here’s a detailed categorization:
- Social Networks: TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
- Intermediation Services: Google Maps, Google Play, Google Shopping, Amazon Marketplace, iOS App Store, and Meta Marketplace.
- ADS (Ads Delivery Systems): Google, Amazon, and Meta.
- Browsers: Chrome and Safari.
- Operating Systems: Google Android, iOS, and Windows PC OS.
- N-IICS (Number-Independent Interpersonal Communication Service): WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
- Search Engines: Google.
- Video Sharing Platforms: YouTube.
The DMA is structured to address competition issues proactively, targeting platforms that display considerable market influence. This is gauged using criteria like having more than 45 million active users locally. Additionally, platforms that have achieved a turnover of over €7.5BN in the past three fiscal years and have a market cap exceeding €75BN are also under scrutiny. Nonetheless, the Commission has the discretion to designate companies, focusing especially on platforms that may gain a dominant market position soon.
Although the regulation has been in effect since May, the final specifics were only ratified earlier this year. This decision came after extended discussions between the European Parliament and Council concerning the Commission’s proposition in late 2020 to reevaluate its digital competition stance.
Interestingly, while seven companies – Alphabet/Google, Apple, Amazon, ByeDance/TikTok, Meta/Facebook, Microsoft, and Samsung – previously anticipated coming under the DMA’s purview, the official list released does not include Samsung. This makes ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company, the only non-US tech giant to make the cut.