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iPhone Sales Tactics Could Trigger EU Anti-Trust Investigation

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The Financial Times has obtained documents showing the EU Commission is quietly looking into Apple’s agreements with European telecommunications carriers. It has expressed concern about anti-competitive practices.

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You may recall that in March, some carriers complained to the European Union anti-trust authorities about Apple’s business practices. The New York Times reported that several French carriers have shared details about their Apple contracts. They claim that Apple forces them to purchase a certain volume of iPhones if they wish to sell them at all.

Currently there is no formal anti-trust investigation. The Financial Times reports, however, that a questionnaire was sent to several European carriers and they were asked to clarify what Apple asked them to do.

The FT article claims the EU Commission’s questionnaire asks the carriers if they are forced to buy a certain quota of iPhones, and whether the Cupertino, California company dictates how marketing budgets should be managed, and other anti-competitive practices involving subsidies and terms of sale.

The carriers are asked to return the completed questionnaires by June 17.

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