2021 connectivity and tech predictions from Insider Intelligence
- From platform policy to hardware innovations, we highlight our top connectivity and technology predictions for 2021.
- Governments around the world are revising their approach to antitrust law with an emphasis on data protection and privacy.
- With the Connectivity & Tech Briefing, Insider Intelligence publishes hundreds of findings, diagrams and forecasts on the Connectivity & Tech industry. More information on subscribing can be found here.
The increasing antitrust cases against Big Tech in 2020 followed a relatively formulaic and old-fashioned interpretation of anti-competitive behavior.
Governments around the world are revising their approach to antitrust law.
Currently, claims in the general FTC and prosecutors’ cases focus on buy-copy-kill tactics to suppress competitors, self-preferential products from gatekeeper platforms, and collusion through foreclosure and partnership agreements. These claims shed light on the business practices of competing companies rather than the effects and harms to consumers.
This is because it has been difficult to use antitrust instruments to deal with the economic impact of products that are largely still free for consumers and that defy clear boundaries between the market. What is the market for “social media” anyway?
Traditionally, antitrust cases have focused on a lack of competition, which leads to significant pricing implications that harm consumers. Antitrust rules have found it more difficult to cope with the impact of data binding, network effects, lack of innovation, lack of choice, and privacy breaches because bundled technology products share user data across a variety of services.
New proposals in the EU and US have expressed the need to modernize and update antitrust laws to reflect the new market dynamics of the data economy. The report by the US Antitrust Subcommittee made a number of suggestions to update antitrust laws and to introduce more aggressive enforcement actions by regulators.
With the proposals of the Digital Services Act and the Digital Markets Act of the European Commission, data protection requirements that improve the customer experience are now addressed, e.g. B. the support of data portability, the limitation of the linking of services and the restriction to standard apps.
Certainly, traditional interpretations of antitrust law will continue to be useful in exploring big tech’s strategies and tactics to maintain dominance. But we will also see efforts by the legislature to modernize the law to adapt it to a new economy and to protect consumers from moral harm.
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