According to news from IT House on January 24, Apple recently filed an antitrust appeal to the UK, arguing that the understanding of the word “shall” (should) in the legal clauses differs from that of the British authorities.In practice, this is not the first time Apple has cut wordsApple emphasized the difference between the words “study” (research) and “investigation” (investigation) in the legal terms in the last antitrust investigation.
IT Home learned that the antitrust investigation of Apple this time mainly involves two aspects:
1. Apple bans cloud gaming services in the App Store
This means that developers cannot provide an application that offers multiple games played through cloud servers. Some believe the company is doing this to protect its own share of gaming revenue and prevent competition from its own Apple Arcade subscription gaming service.
2. Only allow the use of the WebKit browser engine
While Apple allows any developer to create their own web browser and put it on the App Store, Apple only approves browsers that use its own WebKit rendering engine.
This makes it impossible for developers to make browser apps faster than Safari, and Apple also prevents third-party browsers from using services such as Apple Pay.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), the British competition watchdog, began its investigation in June last year. In Apple’s latest antitrust filing, it believes that there is a deviation in the understanding of the word “shall” between Apple and the CMA.
Apple pointed out in the document that the CMA has missed the deadline to conduct an antitrust investigation. UK law says the CMA should announce its investigation on the same day it publishes its preliminary findings. But the CMA’s investigation came later.
In this regard, Apple believes that “shall” in the legal terms should be understood as “must” (must), which means that CMA’s investigation after the deadline is not in compliance. However, CMA believes that “shall” should be understood as “should”, and CMA believes that it can intervene in the investigation in the follow-up time.
Solving the issue is not straightforward, says Flowserve Patents, because there are precedents on both sides of the argument.
Law firm Allen & Overy reports a Court of Appeal (England and Wales) ruling according to which “shall” is merely an expression of intent by the parties when entering into a contract.
Another UK law firm, Ashurst (which has represented UEFA in an EU antitrust case against the European Super League firm and has so far been successful), has published a very illuminating overview of how market research and market surveys work in the UK , thinking that “shall” should be understood as the meaning of “must”.
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