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Digital Competition's Newsletter: AI scrutiny Intensifies

Christophe Carugati

n°6 Free Edition

11 June 2024

The newsletter outlines news related to GenAI, DMA, and antitrust.

What matters in digital competition, and what implications does it have for digital and competition policies? What can we expect next?

As an expert in digital and competition policies and the founder of Digital Competition, I specialise in providing research and advice on complex and emerging issues to advance open digital and competition policies for better innovation. Our services include policy hubs for research on global digital and competition issues, consultations, training, and conferences for various stakeholders such as tech firms, venture capitalists, law firms, governments, and organisations navigating intricate regulatory landscapes.

I welcome inquiries for membership, consultations, and press inquiries at

I want to emphasise that I have not received any funding for this newsletter and have no conflicts of interest with the firms mentioned below. This newsletter is a monthly free edition, and you are welcome to share it or unsubscribe anytime.



Competition authorities worldwide are increasingly concerned that a few large online platforms might dominate the AI sector. Determined to act swiftly and avoid the historical delays seen in digital market interventions, they are taking proactive measures.

In the United Kingdom, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) reviewed the Microsoft/MistralAI partnership but decided not to pursue an investigation, citing Microsoft's lack of material influence over MistralAI. The CMA is also considering AI developments in its ongoing cloud market investigation and may address competition concerns when drafting codes of conduct under the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers (DMCC) Bill. This bill aims to enhance competition in UK digital markets by imposing conduct requirements and pro-competitive interventions to firms with strategic market status in specific digital activities.

Across the Atlantic, the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) are collaborating to thoroughly investigate the AI sector, focusing on computing power, data, cloud service providers, talent, and hardware. Antitrust investigations against Nvidia, Microsoft, and OpenAI may soon be officially announced.

Meanwhile, market competition is intensifying as Microsoft integrates AI into its Windows operating system and Apple enters the AI race with new features and a partnership with OpenAI to power its Siri voice assistant.

I will be in Brussels on June 17 and from June 26 to 28 for events. Additionally, I will be in Cannes for the Cannes Lions from June 18 to 21. I would be happy to meet in person during these times. Please send me a message to organise a meeting or if you want to discuss digital and competition policies further.

My work


External: Antitrust in the Age of Artificial Intelligence: Lessons from "I, Robot": We argue with Miguel Perez Guerra that the AI markets are competitive and that firms should follow AI competition rules to address concerns by competition authorities. The paper

Analysis: Ensuring a Coherent European Regulatory Approach to Artificial Intelligence: The DMA intersects with AI-related laws like data protection, IP rights, and content moderation. The DMA's High-Level Group should establish a collaborative framework and handle joint cases for consistent enforcement. The analysis


Analysis: The UK Digital Competition Bill: What Should the UK Learn from Europe and Germany? The United Kingdom regulates competition in digital markets, following similar initiatives in Europe and Germany. It can learn from their compliance experiences and engage in international collaboration to ensure consistency. The analysis

Quoted OECD papers: The OECD quoted my work on AI, data protection, and international cooperation in its background papers on AI (Türkiye and BIAC also did it), data privacy, and monopolisation, respectively. The AI paper. The data privacy paper. The monopolisation paper


Training Summer School on Digital and Competition Policies: The summer school offers a comprehensive overview of the novel and fast-moving regulatory and market developments related to digital and AI markets. The summer school


Research projects: Let’s work together

I am open to collaborating on digital and competition research projects focusing on generative AI, mobile ecosystems, the transition from search to answer engines, platform regulations, international coherence of digital market regulations, and privacy and competition. Additionally, I am seeking funding opportunities from corporations or public institutions to support these endeavours. Please don't hesitate to reach out at your convenience to delve deeper into these topics.


I will also be glad to intervene as an expert to help you solve DMA-related issues.



Generative AI


AI is under intense scrutiny: Competition authorities closely monitor market developments while firms compete and innovate.


Microsoft integrates AI in Windows: Microsoft AI solution Copilot is now part of Windows. Microsoft


Apple does AI: Apple has always been known for its great devices and operating systems. Now, as expected, Apple is supercharging them with new 'Apple Intelligence' features—Apple's fancy term for Artificial Intelligence. AI will run directly on the device using small language models, while more complex AI tasks will be handled by a private cloud to ensure user privacy. Additionally, Apple is entering the personal agent space by giving Siri new AI superpowers powered by OpenAI models. Apple. Apple Intelligence 


Apple partners with OpenAI: This partnership integrates OpenAI models and ChatGPT into Siri. Does this raise any competition issues? At first glance, it does not. OpenAI remains fully independent, although some competition experts may argue that the partnership reduces Apple’s incentive to innovate. While Apple could have developed its own technology, competition laws do not require a firm to do so. For example, car manufacturers rely on third parties for wheels, and competition laws do not mandate self-production.


This partnership is a win-win for both Apple and OpenAI. Apple gains access to efficient technologies in a timely manner, while OpenAI can reach Apple’s extensive user base and great devices. However, the partnership could raise competition concerns if it prevents OpenAI from competing with Apple in the future (but both Apple and OpenAI have great competition lawyers to avoid this issue, so it is just hypothetical). It would be natural for OpenAI to compete with Apple, as it already has a personal agent (combination of an operating system and voice assistant) and an application store. OpenAI just needs excellent hardware and silicon chips to scale its deployment to users. For now, Apple is providing that. The partnership


The United Kingdom 🇬🇧 will not investigate the Microsoft/MistralAI partnership: As I recommended to the CMA, the deal does not fall under the UK merger control law as Microsoft lacks a material influence over Mistral. Microsoft/MistralAI partnership. My submission to the CMA


The United States investigates Nvidia and Microsoft/OpenAI: The New York Times reported that the US DoJ and FTC have partnered to explore competition issues in the AI sector, though details on the theories of harm at stake remain undisclosed. The news


Microsoft on AI partnerships: Microsoft's vice chair and president, Brad Smith, argued at a CERRE event that without partnerships like the one between Microsoft and OpenAI, AI markets would not exist (I argued the same in a previous paper). The CERRE event. My paper on co-opetition in AI


Digital Markets Act

Ensuring consistency: The High-level group for the DMA issued a public statement on AI to promote a coherent cross-regulatory approach. The statement. My analysis



The UK has (finally) a new digital competition regime with the DMCC bill: This legislation empowers the CMA to enforce conduct requirements and implement pro-competitive interventions on firms identified as holding strategic market status in digital activities. The Bill. My analysis 


The UK issued its preliminary findings on cloud services: The CMA released five papers focusing on technical barriers, licensing practices, potential remedies, competitive landscape, and egress fees. While these issues are not novel, given previous investigations by authorities globally, this marks the first instance of an authority examining developments in AI markets in relation to cloud services. The cloud services market inquiry. The published cloud studies

About the author

Christophe Carugati

Dr. Christophe Carugati is the founder of Digital Competition. He is a renowned and passionate expert on digital and competition issues with a strong reputation for doing impartial, high-quality research. After his PhD in law and economics on Big Data and Competition Law, he is an ex-affiliate fellow at the economic think-tank Bruegel and a lecturer in competition law and economics at Lille University.

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