Steam accused of ripping off 14m UK gamers, EU to hit Chinese EVs with extra tariffs

Baldur’s Gate 3 was the bestselling game on Steam in 2023. Image: Larian Studios

The owner of Steam – the largest digital distribution platform for PC games in the world – is being sued for £656m. Valve Corporation is being accused of using its market dominance to overcharge 14 million people in the UK. “Valve is rigging the market and taking advantage of UK gamers,” said digital rights campaigner Vicki Shotbolt, who is bringing the case. Valve has been contacted for comment. The claim – which has been filed at the Competition Appeal Tribunal, in London – accuses Valve of “shutting out” competition in the PC gaming market. BBC News 

Elon Musk has moved to drop a lawsuit he filed against ChatGPT maker OpenAI and learned he is facing a fresh investor claim relating to his sale of Tesla shares. The tech billionaire, who had launched his complaint early this year, looked to drop the action just 24 hours before a San Francisco judge was to hear a bid by OpenAI to have the case thrown out. He had accused the firm…of abandoning its original mission of developing artificial intelligence for the benefit of humanity and not for profit. Sky News 

The European Union is poised to hit cheap Chinese electric vehicles (EVs)
with extra import tariffs of 25pc, raising the prospect of a trade war with Beijing.  Brussels is gearing up to announce the measures today following an eight-month investigation into the issue, which is expected to reveal how electric car makers in China have benefitted from massive state support. With the EU’s import tariffs on EVs from outside the bloc already set at 10pc, the European Commission will tell manufacturers that it intends to raise the figure to as much as 35pc, according to the Financial Times. Telegraph  

Spotify may have only just raised its prices for a second time in a year, but reports suggest it’s planning an add-on that will finally deliver the high-resolution music that has been rumoured since the dawn of time.  According to Bloomberg who has spoken to a person familiar with the new add-on, users will be charged at least $5 more per month for access to better quality audio and new tools for “creating playlists and managing their song libraries”. It also looks like Spotify could be stretching further into AI, as the source reports that subscribers will also be able to instantly generate custom playlists around events and dates in the year. WhatHiFi

Immediately after introducing upgraded versions of its Elite 10 and Elite 8 Active earbuds, Jabra says it’s departing the consumer earbuds market entirely. Jabra’s parent company GN announced that it’s winding down its Elite and Talk audio product ranges in order to “increase focus and resources on more attractive parts” of its business, citing the rising costs of competition. The Verge

Apple’s event yesterday focused on software and the company didn’t say much about hardware. But the company is working on at least two foldable devices behind the scenes – one 20.3” MacBook, which is reportedly closer to completion, and one 7.9” foldable iPhone. The latter will have an outward folding design, similar to the Huawei Mate Xs 2, according to analyst Jeff Pu. Pu expects this foldable iPhone to be ready for late 2026, although other analysts place the launch date in 2027. GSM Arena

Chris Price
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