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Australia starts examining the role of digital platform service providers

Australia’s ACCC said it will examine the role of digital platform service providers, like Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Apple, Meta (Facebook) and Microsoft — as part of its five-year Digital Platform Services Inquiry.
Digital platforms and their businessLarge digital platform service providers, like Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Apple, Meta (Facebook) and Microsoft, invest heavily across different sectors and technologies, creating a web of interconnected products and services.

ACCC is seeking inputs from consumers, businesses and interested stakeholders about the investment decisions made by digital platforms, the interconnectedness of expanded products and services within each ecosystem and the potential impacts on competition and consumers.

“Large digital platforms have become an integral part of our daily lives, they have access to enormous user data bases and personal information across their ecosystems,” ACCC Chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said.

“This report will assess how that data can leveraged across products and services within an ecosystem that may prevent businesses from entering and competing.”

The report will examine the expansion strategies used by digital platform service providers and how this has affected interoperability of products and services and if it has increased consumer lock-in or other conduct like bundling, tying or self-preferencing to inhibit competition.

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