Apple spent more than ever on lobbying as antitrust threats loom
Apple CEO Tim Cook attends the Allen and Co. Sun Valley media event in Sun Valley (Idaho), U.S.A, July 10, 2019.
Brendan McDermid | REUTERS
In part, the increased spending is due to increasing pressure from Apple at home and overseas as Apple faces greater regulation. The Senate Judiciary Committee has passed two bills this year. Open App Markets ActThe American Innovation and Choice Online ActApple would have to allow developers access to its iPhone ecosystem and stop it favoring apps from other app stores over its own. Apple already has warned of privacy concernsAlthough such rules might raise consumer prices, the authors of these bills claim they are overbroad.
Europe is preparing its next phase. Digital Markets AppThis could also have profound implications for U.S. technology businesses.
Apple’s Washington disclosure highlights some of the company’s key focus areas, such as a list of pending tech competition bills and foreign digital regulation. It also outlines how Apple will fund its patent policies. Apple also stated that it engaged Congress in tax matters and provided general information about its diversity, environment and coding education policies.
Apple is still a relatively low-spending company among Big Tech companies. GoogleSpending $2.96million in the fourth quarter was almost 34% more than last quarter. However, it is still well below its record quarterly spending of $6 million.
MicrosoftThe company, which managed to avoid the most severe criticisms from lawmakers from tech companies, reported an increase in spending in the last quarter. It spent $2.54million lobbying and that was 2.8% more than the prior period.