We are all familiar with various retailers offering discounted iTunes cards by now. We told you just yesterday that Walmart is offering downloadable $100 iTunes/App Store gift cards for just $80. The redeem code associated with these cards is usually good for the purchase of all content from the stores including songs, movies, TV shows, apps, games, books, etc. However, according to a report from German website ifun.de, Apple is no longer allowing discounted iTunes cards to be used toward the purchase of books in the country due to pressure from a German bookseller association:
Apple says, discounted iTunes gift cards are not valid for ebooks anymore in Germany…Background is a law, that forces retailers to offer books at same price in Germany. This is to protect small book shops. Booksellers association sent Apple a c&d letter last week, to end selling ebooks for discounted iTunes credit… Announcing an actual gift card discount, German supermarket REWE notices, that discounted iTunes cards can’t be used to buy books at the iTunes Store.
Apple has bigger things to worry about at home with a trial in the U.S. Department of Justice’s ongoing eBook antitrust suit currently scheduled for June 2013. Most recently, Apple claimed previous settlements with three book publishers involved in the case were unlawful and requested the settlements be rejected or delayed until after trial. It is possible Apple’s decision to stop allowing discounted iTunes cards to be used for book purchases will eventually extend to other markets.