The Wall Street Journal, while covering the possible antitrust inquiry Apple is facing, has reported that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has also been looking into Apple’s iAd mobile advertising service. The reason for the investigation comes from another change (besides publicized ban of cross-platform-compilers) in the developer agreement that effectively hinders other ad […]
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FTC Looking Into Apple's iAd Service?

The Wall Street Journal, while covering the possible antitrust inquiry Apple is facing, has reported that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has also been looking into Apple’s iAd mobile advertising service.

The reason for the investigation comes from another change (besides publicized ban of cross-platform-compilers) in the developer agreement that effectively hinders other ad agencies from gathering the information needed to run an ad platform.

One wireless-advertising executive said he was contacted a few weeks ago by an official from the FTC who wanted to talk about how the mobile-ad industry works, the Apple developer agreement and how it could affect the executive’s business.

The FTC has also taken an interest in iAd in the context of the agency’s investigation of Google Inc.’s $750 million purchase of mobile-ad company AdMob Inc. Several developers said they have been contacted by the FTC about the Google-AdMob probe, with two saying they were told that the agency was also looking into the iAd service.

I am not a lawyer, however, I do think this investigation has sounder legal ground than the antitrust inquiry Apple is facing. Apple has hosted other ad agencies on the iPhone, and suddenly changes their mind, because they now have their own ad service to offer.

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