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Zuckerberg calls Apple's App Store control not 'a sustainable or good place to be'

Tesla (TSLA) CEO and new Twitter owner Elon Musk has an ally in his fight with Apple (AAPL): Meta Platforms (META) chief executive Mark Zuckerberg.

Speaking Wednesday at the New York Times Dealbook Summit, Zuckerberg criticized the iPhone-maker over App Store policies that for years have negatively impacted his own business.

“I do think Apple has singled themselves out as the only company trying to control unilaterally what apps get on the device,” Zuckerberg said. “I don’t think that’s a sustainable or good place to be.”

Apple, of course, has been no friend to Meta in recent years, with the company's decision to change privacy settings in iOS rocking the digital media world as tracking users across apps became more difficult.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 30: Andrew Ross Sorkin speaks with Meta CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg during the New York Times DealBook Summit in the Appel Room at the Jazz At Lincoln Center on November 30, 2022 in New York City. The New York Times held its first in person DealBook Summit since the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic with speakers from the worlds of financial services, technology, consumer goods, private investment, venture capital, banking, media, public relations, policy, government, and academia.   (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)
Andrew Ross Sorkin speaks with Meta CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg during the New York Times DealBook Summit in the Appel Room at the Jazz At Lincoln Center on November 30, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

As Yahoo Finance's Dan Howley noted in a story earlier this month, Apple rolled out the change in 2021, which lets users choose whether apps track them across third-party apps and websites. Zuckerberg warned Apple’s privacy changes would kill digital advertising, even before recent challenges in the ad business arose.

Zuckerberg said it was “problematic” one company is able to control what kind of app experiences users get on the device, citing the breadth of Apple's consumer base in the U.S. and worldwide.

The remarks come after Musk earlier this week bashed Apple for threatening to remove Twitter from its marketplace of apps. Spotify (SPOT) CEO Daniel Ek, another longtime critic of Apple's App Store policies, also ripped Apple's policies on Wednesday, as it seems Musk's complaints have set off another round of criticism towards the iPhone maker among tech leaders.

Zuckerberg also weighed in on Musk's seemingly close involvement on moderation decisions on Twitter, saying although one person should not be responsible for decision making over what is shared on the platform, it was good to see companies taking different approaches.

“You can agree or disagree with what Elon is doing, but I do think it is going to be very interesting to see how this plays out in terms of the approaches he’s taking,” Zuckerberg said.

“I would guess that not everything is going to work, but I think some things might work,” Zuckerberg added, emphasizing also that he believed Musk would agree with that view.

“I think it’s completely reasonable if some platforms conclude that they want to have different policies than others.”

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