Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants tougher action against Apple for what he essentially calls monopolistic conduct in the market. More "scrutiny" would be the antidote. To Axios, Zuckerberg said:
Well, I certainly think that they have the unilateral control of what gets on the phones in terms of apps. I think it’s probably about 50 percent of Americans who have smartphones, and a lot more people around the world. I think there are more than a billion Apple devices. So I do think that there are questions that people should be looking into about that control of the App Store and whether that is enabling as robust of a competitive dynamic.
He also spoke of Apple's approach in contrast with Google's Play store, according to Business Insider, claiming:
As a developer if you’re not in the Google Play Store, at least you still have a way to get your app on people’s devices. And that means that people aren’t completely going to be shut out if they’re doing something that Google doesn’t prefer. I think that that’s really important, that people have a way to create something and get it on devices if people want.
To anyone remotely familiar with either company's record, it screams a classic scenario of the pot calling the kettle black.
A little introspection helps — If Zuckerberg was the founder of a small-time app struggling to make a mark in an Apple-dominant marketplace, it would be worth listening to him and empathizing with a complaint countless developers have raised against the company. But this lamenting is coming from the CEO of a company known for using a mobile VPN app called Onavo to collect data through the apps users used for business gains. It instantly raised official concerns about monopolistic behavior.
Through this information, Facebook was able to learn about WhatsApp's global status as a messenger that keeps billions of people connected across cities, countries, and continents. In a similar grab for power, Facebook unsuccessfully attempted to buy Snapchat. When that failed, the company effectively introduced the stories feature to Instagram. And thanks to Instagram's humongous user base, stories became more of an Instagram option than a Snapchat creation.
Let's be frank for a second — These details may seem petty during a quick read, but they demonstrate the hypocrisy in Zuckerberg's call for scrutiny against Apple. Both parties are incredibly difficult to empathize with. While Facebook is known for internal emails about crushing competition and quickly recanting such statements, Apple's 30 percent commission rate slapped onto developer bills is an equally frustrating and uneven playing field for many app creators.
There is a reason why companies like Epic Games have gone to legal war with the latter. And it won't be the last time that a company decides to talk back and question Apple's authority. But in blunt terms, Zuckerberg sounds unhappy about Apple's market power at a personal level. The likelihood of Zuckerberg aspiring to have his empire replace Apple's is much higher than him being sincerely concerned for the average developer. The skepticism is loud, clear, and well warranted. Just check any comment section on the reports.