Apple to appeal $1.2M fine imposed by Italian regulators over AppleCare warranties

Apple plans to appeal a decision by Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato to impose $1.2 million USD fine for not providing consumers with a two-year warranty mandatory under European Union law and the Italian Consumer Code. An Apple PR representative apparently confirmed the decision to appeal the fines to The Register.

We reported earlier this week that Italian antitrust authorities were fining Apple Inc., Apple Sales International, and Apple Retail Italy $1.2 million USD related to “bad commercial practices that harmed consumers.” The Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato claimed Apple has not implemented a two-year product guarantee available to all consumers through EU law. Instead, Apple continues to push their own AppleCare warranties to consumers without indication of the consumer’s rights to the free two-year guarantee.

The Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato asked Apple “cease practice” of their current warranty policies, and “notify the Authority” of a new course of action. They also want Apple to publish clarification of the new policy on Apple.com to notify consumers. It is unclear if other authorities throughout the EU will take similar action.

Apple is also accused by the European Antitrust Commission of engaging in “illegal agreements or practices that would have the object or the effect of restricting competition in the EU or in the EEA” related to their iBooks business.

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Samsung drops iPhone 4S Germany patent suit after discovering Apple’s Qualcomm licensing agreement

Samsung dropped its lawsuit in Germany seeking to ban the sale of Apple’s iPhone 4S.

The South Korea-based company had focused its complaint against a patent covering 3G communications tech. According to patent expert Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents, Samsung recently discovered a Qualcomm licensing agreement protects the technology.

“Other news from Mannheim: Samsung has formally given up attacking the iPhone 4S with 3G patents. Recognizes Apple is licensed thru Qualcomm,” tweeted Mueller on Dec. 16.

Samsung recently lost a preliminary bid to ban iPhone 4S sales in France; although, the case can progress as a patent trial:

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