Apple may be the next tech giant in the crosshairs of the US Justice Department, with the department in the early stages of drafting a potential antitrust suit against the company.
According to the news website Politico, various agencies within the Justice Department are putting together pieces of the puzzle for the antitrust case with the possibility of filing suit by the end of the year.
The potential case is reportedly focused on complaints from Tile, a company that makes location-tracking devices.
Apple made a move to compete with Tile and similar companies with its AirTag product, which led Tile to raise concerns to Congress in 2021 about Apple’s business practices.
In addition to the AirTag device, Tile and other businesses claimed that Apple also made it harder for competing companies to access location data with privacy changes to Apple’s Find My app.
The department has been investigating Apple since 2019 over allegations that it abused its market power to squeeze out smaller tech companies, including app developers and competing hardware makers, according to Politico.
Apple is not the first Big Tech company to be scrutinized for its business practices.
Both state and federal regulators have filed antitrust cases against tech giants Facebook and Google over the past several years to try and regulate their dominance and monopolization of the global internet, social media and online advertising markets.
The Federal Trade Commission is also pursuing an antitrust investigation of Amazon involving both its retail and cloud computing businesses.
The Justice Department has made no concrete decisions on whether it will sue Apple, and despite rumblings of an antitrust suit against the tech giant, it is still possible no case will be filed.
Both the department and Apple declined to comment.