Digital platform services inquiry 2020-2025

Project overview


On 10 February 2020 the Australian Government directed the ACCC to conduct an inquiry into markets for the supply of digital platform services.

Digital platform services covered by this direction include internet search engine services, social media services, online private messaging services, digital content aggregation platform services, media referral services and electronic marketplace services. The direction also covers digital advertising services supplied by digital platform service providers and the data practices of both digital platform service providers and data brokers.

The ACCC must provide the Treasurer with an interim report on the inquiry by 30 September 2020 and then further interim reports every six months until the inquiry concludes with a final report to be provided to the Treasurer by 31 March 2025.

Scope of inquiry

Matters to be considered by the inquiry include:

  • the intensity of competition in markets for the supply of digital platform services, with particular regard to the concentration of power, the behaviour of suppliers, mergers and acquisitions, barriers to entry or expansion and changes in the range of services offered by suppliers of digital platform services
  • practices of suppliers in digital platform services markets which may result in consumer harm
  • market trends that may affect the nature and characteristics of digital platform services
  • developments in markets for the supply of digital platform services outside Australia.

Further details of the matters to be considered in the inquiry are provided in the Ministerial direction.


On 17 November 2020, the ACCC published submissions to the issues paper and fact sheets informing the March 2021 interim report. Responses to the related consumer and app developer questionnaires were published on 27 November 2020.


Stages Date


Companies that would like to share their experience in these markets can email the ACCC at

Other inquiries

The ACCC is conducting an 18-month inquiry into markets for the supply of digital advertising technology services and digital advertising agency services.

See: Digital advertising services inquiry