Apple Draws Scrutiny From Regulators

U.S. antitrust enforcers are taking a keen interest in recent changes that Apple Inc. (AAPL) made to its licensing agreement with iPhone application developers and are likely to open a preliminary investigation into whether the company’s actions stifle competition in mobile devices, according to people familiar with the situation.

The Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department, which are jointly tasked with enforcing federal antitrust laws, are holding discussions over which agency would hold the inquiry, these people said. Apple, the FTC and Justice Department all declined to comment.

The process is at a preliminary stage and any resulting investigation wouldn’t necessarily lead to action. It’s also unclear what grounds an investigation would cover. News of the regulators’ talks were earlier reported by the New York Post.

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