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Europe asks if Digital Markets Act should apply to iMessage

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EU officials are asking rivals of the tech giants whether Apple's iMessage should be subjected to the rules of the Digital Markets Act, to help determine the next course of action for the regulators.

The European Union's Digital Markets Act (DMA) is a set of rules specifically targeting the tech giants, including Apple, Amazon, Google, and others. The rules aim to level the playing field for other companies, but officials are still trying to determine what they should do with the new powers.

According to Reuters questionnaires were sent out by the European Commission, asking for rivals and users to rate how important Apple's iMessage and three services of Microsoft's are compared to competitors. They were also asked if there were specific reasons that business users relied on the various services, and how many users used them.

The European Commission started a probe into iMessage, as well as Microsoft's Bing, Edge, and Microsoft Advertising in September, to determine whether they need to be operated within the rules of the DMA.

After arguing iMessage wasn't big enough to count as a gatekeeper service in the EU, Apple managed to get its messaging app removed from compliance with the DMA in September. However, it seems that the European Commission is keen to determine whether those rules should apply at all.

The investigation is expected to run for another five months.