Apple has entered into an agreement with Amazon to remove ads from competitors on pages featuring iPhones, iPads, MacBooks, and other Apple products, as reported by Insider. This deal results in cleaner search results and product pages for Apple devices compared to those of rival brands. Although company still displays competing products in search results for Apple items, it restricts the placement of ads above, below, and between the results.
For instance, if you search for an iPhone 15 on Amazon, you will only find an Apple product banner at the top of the page and another ad banner at the very bottom. In contrast, searches for competing devices, such as the Samsung Galaxy S23, yield ads for various products and services throughout the results page.
Insider also notes that Amazon reduces the number of ads on Apple’s product pages. Unlike pages for Apple products, which are relatively ad-free, pages for products from companies like Samsung are often cluttered with recommended items from other brands further down the page.
Apple reportedly cut a deal to get cleaner Amazon pages
The absence of ads on Apple’s pages can be traced back to a 2018 agreement between Apple and Amazon, according to Insider. In an email disclosed by the House Judiciary Committee, Jeff Wilke, Company’s former retail chief, mentioned, “We understand that Apple does not want to drive sales to competing brands in search or detail pages… On product detail pages, we understand that Apple does not want to see any product placement that recommends non-Apple products.” Apple’s spokesperson, Fred Sainz, confirmed this arrangement to The Verge, explaining that it restricts advertising in spaces related to specific Apple queries.
It remains unclear whether Apple compensates Amazon for the occupied ad space and, if so, the extent of this compensation. Jeff Wilke’s email to Company suggests that Apple may need to purchase these placements or compensate Amazon for the lost ad revenue.
The Federal Trade Commission cites the “junk” ads placed by Amazon around its marketplace as one of the behaviors in its antitrust lawsuit against the company, claiming that Company extracts billions of dollars through increased advertising despite deteriorating services for customers. By largely avoiding these practices, Apple could gain an advantage over other retailers on Amazon.