The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will look into allegations that its ban of third-party advertising services in applications for the iPhone and iPad are anticompetitive, according to unnamed sources cited by Bloomberg.
The FTC wants to know whether Apple’s new policy of banning developers from using third-party advertising services without consent will stifle competition in the mobile advertising market.
The language in Apple’s new developers agreement essentially forbids developers from using Google-owned AdMob in their applications to gather data.
Neither the FTC nor Apple replied to requests for comment. AdMob CEO Omar Hamouis said in a blog post last week that Apple’s changes to its developers agreement were “not in the best interests of users or developers,” calling the limits on third-party services “artificial barriers to competition.”
Google faced intense regulatory scrutiny over its purchase of AdMob, which took several months to pass muster from government authorities after the deal was announced in November. The FTC didn’t approve the deal until May, when it cited the launch of Apple’s iAd mobile advertising network as a reason the deal passed muster on competitive grounds.