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AWS could be facing antitrust scrutiny

A person holding a virtual cloud in the palm of their hand.
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Bloomberg has claimed that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is going to move forward with the antitrust investigation on Amazon Web Services (AWS), citing anonymous people familiar with the matter.

The sources, who remained anonymous as they’re unauthorized to speak publicly on the matter, say that the recent questionnaires the FTC has been sending out to Amazon’s partners and clients are a strong indication that the Commission is serious in its intentions. 

The FTC, and its head - Lina Khan, argue that the company might have discriminated against competitors who also sell their products to AWS clients, by favoring those clients who choose to work exclusively with AWS, and punishing all others. 

Amazon claims Khan is biased

Both the FTC and Amazon have so far been quiet on the matter, although Amazon did file a petition in June demanding Khan be removed from the antitrust enforcement decisions, claiming Khan’s previous criticism means she is biased.

It also provided FTC with all the information it demanded, Bloomberg reminds. 

The FTC started investigating Amazon long before Khan took the helm. It was actually Joe Simons, from the Trump administration, who started probing not just into AWS, but into Amazon’s retail business, as well. For the third quarter of the year, Amazon's cloud hosting business, AWS, generated $4.88 billion in operating income for Amazon, up 38% and more than the $4.12 billion consensus that analysts had expected, CNBC reported earlier. The entire company ended the quarter with $4.85 billion in operating income. The company’s shares fell 1% on the news, but quickly bounced.

It holds almost a third (32%) of the entire cloud infrastructure services market, followed by Microsoft Azure’s 21%, according to Statista.

Via: Bloomberg