The European Commission is mounting an antitrust investigation into the Internet of Things, targeting voice assistants such as Apple's Siri and Amazon's Alexa.
The probe concerns how Silicon Valley uses data to dominate growing markets, and European Union (E.U.) Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said voice assistants are central because they control how users interact with things.
Such products give technology firms access to sensitive data about consumers at a time when they continue to collect information, worrying regulators this could quash competition.
The E.U. said companies favoring their own products or setting strict terms on industry standards could impel dominant digital ecosystems and gatekeepers. For example, voice requests to buy products could circumvent competitors by immediately directing purchases to a single shopping website, like Amazon.
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