Freedom?

The European Union’s inquiry into whether Apple had colluded with music labels to suppress competition from streaming music services like Spotify has concluded that no evidence exists to support such claims.

The investigation involved the questioning of executives from several of Apple’s partner labels to determine whether App Store limitations might “lock out” competitors.

The inquiry did reveal that Spotify has seen pressure lately from label executives who dislike free streaming, but found that the pressure wasn’t necessarily related to the launch of Apple Music.

The probe was originally launched amid suggestions that Apple’s licensing terms may have been aiming to stifle free, ad-based offerings from competitors like Spotify and Pandora. Though the EU found that this was not the case, regulators have said they will keep the files open as Spotify continues ongoing negotiations with music labels.

Apple’s policy of taking a 30% cut of all digital sales through the App Store—including streaming music subscriptions from Spotify and the like—are still under investigation both in the EU and the United States.

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