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The Italian anti-trust authority slaps Apple and Amazon with multi-million-euro fines

The way Beats earphones sell on Amazon.it is about to change. (Source: Beats)
The way Beats earphones sell on Amazon.it is about to change. (Source: Beats)
Italy's anti-competition watchdog AGCM has ruled against Apple and Amazon in a case concerning the sale of Beats-series products on the latter's website for the country. The authority has concluded that the 2 OEMs formulated sales agreements for the audio accessories that amounted to an anti-trust practice. The companies may now have to pay a combined ~US$236 million in penalties as a result.
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The Italian body Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (or AGCM) has announced its ruling in a case brought against the companies Amazon and Apple over the way in which products from the Beats line of audio peripherals have been sold on the former's retail platform.

The AGCM has upheld allegations that the Beats brand has only been available on Amazon.it through Apple alone, or through a restricted pool of retailers as mandated by the same company. This system has apparently been in place as the result of an agreement between the Cupertino giant and the online retail behemoth dating from 2018.

The same contract also let Apple impose restrictions on selling Beats-series devices on amazon.it to non-Italian customers. This behavior has been deemed as a suppression of competition that contravenes EU law.

AGCM has declared that Apple is now liable for a fine of €135 million (~US$153 million), whereas Amazon must pay €78 million and also allow any seller who wants to offer genuine Beats products to do so via the Italian version of its site.

Buy some Beats Fit Pros on Amazon.com

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Deirdre O'Donnell
Deirdre O'Donnell - Senior Tech Writer - 4508 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
I became a professional writer and editor shortly after graduation. My degrees are in biomedical sciences; however, they led to some experience in the biotech area, which convinced me of its potential to revolutionize our health, environment and lives in general. This developed into an all-consuming interest in more aspects of tech over time: I can never write enough on the latest electronics, gadgets and innovations. My other interests include imaging, astronomy, and streaming all the things. Oh, and coffee.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 11 > The Italian anti-trust authority slaps Apple and Amazon with multi-million-euro fines
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2021-11-23 (Update: 2021-11-24)