After lobbying against it for years, Apple was recently forced to make a change it didn’t want to make. To comply with the EU’s new rules on standardising mobile chargers, the tech giant has ditched its Lightning charging cable for a USB-C wire.
Now, Thierry Breton, Commissioner for Internal Market, is asking the company to take a step further. That is, “opening up gates to competitors,” he tweeted, following a meeting with Apple’s Tim Cook on Tuesday.
Together with Apple’s CEO @tim_cook 🍏
“Only one” — making cable clutter a thing of the past 🔌
Next: opening up gates to competitors #DMA
The EU is a major market for US companies and an opportunity to innovate & diversify their supply chains 🇪🇺 pic.twitter.com/YX6qpVnfk1
— Thierry Breton (@ThierryBreton) September 26, 2023
Apple has meticulously guarded a closed ecosystem for its hardware and software products, but Breton said that’s no longer possible under the Digital Markets Act (DMA) — the bloc’s newly-adopted pro-competition regulation.
Earlier this month, the company was designated as one of the (initially) six “gatekeepers” of the EU’s digital market, which will have to comply with a series of strict do’s and don’ts. For example, they’ll need to allow consumers to uninstall pre-installed apps and replace them with third-party equivalents.
“Be it the electronic wallet, browsers or app stores, consumers using an Apple iPhone should be able to benefit from competitive services by a range of providers,” the commissioner told Reuters after the meeting.
“EU regulation fosters innovation, without compromising on security and privacy,” he added, apparently dismissing’s Apple’s arguments in favour of maintaining a closed ecosystem
Meanwhile, the company’s hurdles in Europe don’t seem to end. Just two weeks ago, France suspended sales of the iPhone 12, following tests that showed exceeding radiation levels. Although Apple refuted the claims, it pledged to provide a fix, and it has now reportedly submitted a software update for review by the French authorities.