You know it's a busy day when Uber files its IPO documents, there's some dirt in them, and that's only item No. 4 in Login.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Amazon is mounting a vigorous defense against the charge that it stifles competition, with founder Jeff Bezos pushing back on critics in his annual shareholder letter yesterday, and the company modifying allegedly anti-competitive practices in recent months, Axios' David McCabe reports.
The big picture: The top antitrust regulator in the EU has said her probe of Amazon is “advancing,” while lawmakers, including some presidential candidates, hammer the company in the U.S.
Driving the news: In Bezos' letter, the Amazon CEO countered two lines of criticism: that his company is strong-arming third-party sellers on its platform, and that it has monopolistic power over the market.
What they're saying: “It certainly looks like they’re concerned about the growing scrutiny on their market power,” said Stacy Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, a longtime critic of the company, who also argued Bezos was downplaying Amazon's power in its marketplace.
Background: Amazon’s critics have ramped up their pressure in recent years, saying the company uses its scale to muscle out competitors in a growing array of businesses.
Now, Amazon is a regular target for progressives.
Amazon has also changed some of the practices that put the firm in the crosshairs of regulators.
"I'm glad Amazon pulled back on some anti-competitive behaviors after I raised concerns about their business model, but I'm still deeply concerned that their own private-label sales on their platform are projected to hit $25 billion by 2022," said Warren in a statement.
Read more of David's story here.
Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios
As Axios' Kim Hart reported earlier today, President Trump and his top telecom regulator will announce plans to unleash the largest-ever swath of radio frequencies in the U.S. and a $20 billion fund to help wireless companies to keep pace with global rivals — specifically China — in the 5G race.
Why it matters: Proponents maintain that a significant economic advantage will be won by the first country to broadly deploy 5G networks, which will deliver wireless speeds 100 times faster than today's mobile internet.
Fears that China has the edge in the global 5G race sparked some (including Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich and Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale) to call for a government-directed national network, similar to China's own approach.
The White House disagrees, as does the FCC which oversees the networks.
Details: At a White House event today, Trump and FCC Chairman Ajit Pai plan to make two announcements.
1. Airwaves: The FCC will auction off three big slices of millimeter-wave airwaves that are crucial to connecting new devices at high speeds.
2. Funding: The agency will announce a "Rural Digital Opportunity Fund" to spend $20.4 billion over 10 years in rural broadband.
Yes, but: The U.S. is hampered in other areas.
The bigger picture: Wireless companies including Verizon and AT&T are in the early stages of 5G roll-outs, with limited services in handful of markets so far and 92 deployments planned by the end of the year.
Go deeper: Kim has more here.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Startup equity has long been part of the Silicon Valley employee experience, but some are questioning whether the gamble is worth it, Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva reports.
Why it matters: Startup employees often give up cash compensation in exchange for stock, under the premise it could someday be worth a fortune.
Between the lines: Early employees know they're giving up some security for a lottery ticket, but even the winning numbers don't always pay off.
Go deeper: Kia has more here.
Uber delivered the first public version of its IPO documents Thursday and, even though it didn't have key final details on how much Uber plans to raise, it had some very interesting information.
Details: Here are a few things that stood out...
Plus, there is some fresh, but nonetheless dirty, laundry from the Uber-Waymo settlement.
Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Apple's expansion into services could test the hardware company in several ways — including the risk of making the company an even bigger antitrust target, Axios' Sara Fischer and I report.
That's because Apple already tightly controls its ecosystems, especially the iPhone and iPad.
Why it matters: Companies have long-alleged that Apple and Google exploit their footing as owners of both the world's largest smartphone operating systems (iOS and Android) and some of the world's most popular apps (like Apple Music and Google Maps).
Driving the news: Dutch antitrust officials said Thursday that they would investigate whether Apple favors its own apps over those of its rivals.
Between the lines: Apple's move into services is likely to create even more of these kinds of issues.
The big picture: It's never been clear whether having a monopoly over a particular platform presents an antitrust problem if the platform itself faces sufficient competition.
Yes, but: It’s not a settled issue. Europe has taken on Google over Android, and similar questions were also raised when Apple controlled both the iPod and iTunes and wouldn't let the device work with other services or the service work with non-iPod devices.
Disney+ may be worth the price of subscription just for this.