Apple, Meta, and Google’s parent company are currently under investigation by the European Union based on new laws designed to regulate the power of global technology giants.

The Digital Markets Act (DMA) came into effect in early March and aims to address “gatekeeper” behavior among tech giants.

If companies are found guilty of non-compliance, they can be fined up to 10% of their global turnover.

With these new rules, companies are expected to allow app developers to direct users to products outside their platform without additional charges.

Additionally, platforms displaying search results must treat all listings fairly and without discrimination towards services offered by third parties.

The European Commission, the executive body of the European Union, expressed concern that Apple and Alphabet, the parent company of Google, have imposed restrictions making it difficult for developers to promote services from other companies on Google or the app store.

They are investigating search results for services like Google Shopping and Google Flights.

Regulators are also considering whether Apple allows users to easily delete software applications and change default settings, browsers, and search engines on its iOS operating system.

The Commission’s main issue with Meta, the owner of Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram, relates to the company’s new subscription model called “pay or agree” for EU users, and whether this complies with their new requirements regarding the use of personal data.

Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Market, said the Commission has been in discussions with these companies for several months.

“We can already see changes happening in the market,” he said.

“But we are not convinced that the solutions from Alphabet, Apple, and Meta comply with their obligations for a fairer and more open digital space for European citizens and businesses.

“If our investigation concludes that there is a lack of full compliance with the DMA, gatekeepers could face heavy fines.”

This investigation is the latest in a series of tough actions against tech giants, which are increasingly facing regulators over concerns about anti-competitive behavior and the use of personal data, especially in Europe.

Apple was required to pay a larger-than-expected fine of €1.8 billion earlier this month after the company was accused by the commission of “abusing its dominant position in the market” for distributing music streaming apps to iOS users through its app store.

An Apple spokesperson said they believe they have complied with the DMA and will participate in the European Commission’s investigation.

Google, which has made significant changes to its services, said it will “continue to defend its approach” in the coming months.

A Meta spokesperson said the company is working to comply with EU rules.

“Subscription as an alternative to advertising is a mature business model in various industries, and we have designed ‘ad-free subscription’ to address some overlapping regulatory obligations, including the DMA,” they said.