The Age of Frenemy in Big Tech

The Age of Frenemy in Big Tech

“Apple has every incentive to use their dominant platform position to interfere with how our apps and other apps work, which they regularly do to preference their own,” Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO

Facebook could indeed file an antitrust lawsuit against Apple on its position that Apple is using its dominance in the iOS ecosystem to obliterate flank “competitors” like Facebook. Lol. Of course, there is no need to sympathize with Facebook which has its own “Supreme Court” to ban and unban members as it desires. This is a new age of frenemy and it looks fascinating as each of these ICT utilities fights one another these days.

Tensions are said to be rising between two tech world giants as Facebook contemplates an antitrust lawsuit against Apple, accusing the company of anticompetitive App Store practices, two anonymous sources tell The New York Times. Friction has been building ahead of Apple’s upcoming release of its App Tracking Transparency feature, which will impact user data that fuels Facebook’s digital advertising business. While he didn’t mention Facebook by name, Apple CEO Tim Cook linked the company to rising polarization, violence and recent erosion of trust.

Facebook has issues with Apple, and Google thinks Apple should not be preaching privacy when its servers in China are maintained under the dutiful watch of the Communist Party. Simply, Apple is not fair – it has strong privacy in the US, but it’s the most porous on privacy in China. Largely, there is no core principle guiding Apple. It is simply making business decisions!

So, it is what it is – everyone is doing all things necessary to protect its castle with no purity on any fundamental principle. Yes, harden your moat and run your playbook. 

These companies have different business models and they have strong reasons to fight among themselves where necessary. Apple’s products are usually paid as Apple is not built on advertising. However, Google and Facebook derive their corporate lives from ads which are used to subsidize some of their solutions for users. Apple should not think that people “parting” with their data for those free goodies is evil.  

The key factor here is balance and that is what Apple should focus on. Yes, there is no need to obliterate Facebook in iOS because users understand one thing: free things are not wholly free. Yahoo gave the world a premium Yahoo email version which ensures you do not see adverts; few paid. Simply, provided the ads are manageable, users will understand.

That does not mean that I am showing sympathy for Facebook as Apple works to clip its data harvesting activities. Yes, Facebook runs its own playbook and Trump is not smiling in Florida.

The independent group that will decide whether former President Donald Trump can return to Facebook is officially taking public comment on the case.

Facebook’s Oversight Board, a group that includes legal experts and human rights advocates, said in an announcement Friday that people and groups with “valuable perspectives” on Trump’s indefinite suspension from the social media platform have until Feb. 8 to weigh in via its online form.


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