European Union Competition Commissioner (EU) Margrethe Vestager asked 400 companies for information to determine whether there were antitrust issues with voice assistants such as Apple Siri, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa.
According to PhoneArena, such investigations have resulted in serious cases and fines for other industries, including energy, finance, and pharmaceutical companies. At a press conference, Vestager said the EU was trying to get information from 400 companies to send Apple, Google, and Amazon a European Union message that Apple was watching closely. According to Vestager, due to the large amount of user data used in Internet of Things devices, the UK gradually became interested in checking voice assistants.
The EU wants to ensure that the leading names in voice assistants do not use their data controls to violate regulations, prevent competition, and endanger competitors. “Interoperability is very important if we want to make this market accessible,” Vestager said.
If the EU discovers that one of its voice assistants breaks the rules related to competition, it could be fined up to 10% of global sales. For example, Apple had sales of about $ 260 billion for the most recent fiscal year, which means Apple could be fined up to $ 26 billion if found to violate EU rules.
There is no guarantee that Vestager and her team will find any problems requiring the appearance of an EU court. And it will probably take some time to complete the investigation.