US accuses Apple of monopolising smartphone market

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The US has filed a landmark lawsuit against Apple which accuses the tech giant of monopolising the smartphone market and crushing competition.

In the lawsuit, the justice department alleges the company used its power to limit competitors as well as the options available to consumers.

Apple has vowed to “vigorously” fight the lawsuit and denies the claims.

It is the third time the company has been sued by the justice department since 2009.

The lawsuit, filed to a federal court in New Jersey, alleges that Apple used “a series of shapeshifting rules” in a bid to “thwart innovation” and “throttle” competitors.

In a statement, Attorney General Merrick Garland said the company “undermines apps, products and services that would otherwise make users less reliant on the iPhone, promote interoperability and lower costs for consumers and developers”.

Mr Garland added that unless Apple is challenged, it will continue to “strengthen its smartphone monopoly”.

The complaint lists a number of “anti-competitive” steps taken by the company, including blocking apps with broad functionality, suppressing mobile cloud streaming services, limiting third-party digital wallets and “diminishing the functionality” of smartwatches not made by the company.

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