Bundling and tying in smart living


  • Ina VIRTOSU University of Macau, SAR Macau, China
  • Chen LI University of Macau, SAR Macau, China




multilateral bundling and tying, market power, abuse of dominance, smart objects


Smart living is a trend promising more comfort, security, and energy efficiency in our everyday life through digitalization and the inter-connectivity of devices. From driverless cars to smart thermostats, from movable office to ecosystem of smart home, all of them are smart “objects” on which smart living and smart cities rely, involving original and innovative solutions aimed at making life more efficient, more controllable, economical, productive, integrated, and sustainable. Nowadays, these objects are not single products anymore but a series of integrated products, which can be tied or bundled. However, the bunding and tying are not traditional one, like ordinary merchandise or software tying in the landmark case Microsoft. It can be between software and hardware, as well as with a more complicated structure. For the smart objects the bundling and tying may be not limited in bilateral ones but also can be multilateral. This paper aims to discuss bundling and tying products in a smart city life, and mainly the commercial reality of such smart products on how the components are bundled and tied. After, it analyses the structure of bundling and tying in some smart products to confirm whether there is a main product, which can be either a hardware or a software, or net-shaped like in the ecosystem of smart home. Based on these commercial realities, this paper discusses whether multilateral bundling and tying related to smart objects may be a threat to a competition order and mainly to violate Articles 102 TFEU.




How to Cite

VIRTOSU, I. ., & LI, C. . (2022). Bundling and tying in smart living. Smart Cities and Regional Development (SCRD) Journal, 6(2), 97–110. https://doi.org/10.25019/scrd.v6i2.132