In what can be pegged as positive news for Apple, Canada’s competition watchdog has dropped its probe against the iPhone maker after two years of investigation as did not find sufficient evidence to conclude that Apple has engaged in an abuse of dominance under the Competition Act.
The Competition Bureau had opened an investigation into concerns of anti‑competitive conduct by Apple related to its contracts with Canadian wireless carriers that sell and market iPhones. The competition watchdog was investigating whether Apple’s contracts with local wireless carriers illegally stifled competition when Cupertino introduced the iPhone.
The Bureau examined whether the contracts harm competition by impacting wireless carriers’ incentives to promote iPhones over other brands of smartphones, and whether they resulted in an increase in the price of handsets or wireless services. The probe, opened in December 2014 by the Competition Bureau, failed to find sufficient evidence that the tech giant had engaged in anti-competitive behavior.
After conducting analyses of the information gathered over the course of the investigation, the Bureau has concluded that it does not have sufficient evidence to suggest Apple is contravening the Act in respect of the Apple Terms at this time. Specifically, the Bureau did not find evidence to suggest that the Apple Terms resulted in a significant effect on competition. The existing evidence suggests that the Apple Terms do not prevent wireless carriers and other OEMs from adopting strategies that serve to mitigate any potential effects of the Apple Terms.