ebooks trial Stories March 7, 2016

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Apple will be on the hook for $450 million after losing its appeal in the e-book price-fixing case, Bloomberg reports. The United States Supreme Court released the decision after Apple appealed the prior ruling. The high-profile case dates back to a 2012 lawsuit from the United States, which Apple appealed all the way to the Supreme Court, but the justices declined to hear the case which leaves the prior ruling intact.

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ebooks trial Stories October 13, 2015

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The U.S. Justice Department has said that is now satisfied with Apple’s measures to guard against any repetition of the type of anti-competitive behaviour ruled illegal in the long-running ebooks trialBloomberg reports that the department has recommended that the court-appointed monitor is no longer necessary.

In a letter to the Manhattan federal judge who found in 2013 that Apple illegally conspired with publishers to set e-book prices, the U.S. said Apple has “now implemented meaningful antitrust policies, procedures, and training programs that were obviously lacking at the time Apple participated in and facilitated the horizontal price-fixing conspiracy found by this court.”

The letter did, however, note that Apple “never embraced a cooperative working relationship with the monitor” …  expand full story

ebooks trial Stories September 18, 2015

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Apple has scored a belated additional victory against Samsung in its endless patent trial battle with the smartphone rival. Apple had originally asked the court for two remedies: financial compensation, and an injunction forbidding Samsung from continuing to sell devices which infringed its patents. The court said yes to the first, no to the second.

As the WSJ reports, a federal appeals court judge has ruled that the court should have also granted the injunction.

“Samsung’s infringement harmed Apple by causing lost market share and lost downstream sales and by forcing Apple to compete against its own patented invention,” the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said[…]

The appeals court [ruled that] a California trial court that previously denied Apple’s request “abused its discretion when it did not enjoin Samsung’s infringement” … 

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ebooks trial Stories December 2, 2014

Apple SVP Eddy Cue with Beats founders Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine

Apple SVP Eddy Cue with Beats founders Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine

In a new interview with Fortune, Apple’s SVP of Internet and Software Services Eddy Cue opened up about Apple’s ongoing ebooks litigation ahead of the company’s December 15th appearance before a federal appeals court. Apple formally appealed the ebooks antitrust ruling earlier this year after a judge ruled in favor of the Department of Justice in 2013 claiming that Apple conspired with ebook publishers to raise prices.

“We feel we have to fight for the truth,” says Cue. “Luckily, Tim feels exactly like I do,” he continues, referring to Apple CEO Tim Cook, “which is: You have to fight for your principles no matter what. Because it’s just not right.”

Earlier last month, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote approved a $450 million settlement under which Apple will not be forced to pay any fees if it wins the upcoming appeal. expand full story

ebooks trial Stories July 25, 2014

Apple’s ebook settlement may not be quite so settled as judge expresses concern

Just as we thought Apple’s long-running ebooks suit might finally be settled, the out-of-court agreement has been thrown into doubt. The judge required to approve the settlement terms has expressed concern that they may be unfair to consumers, reports Business Insider.

U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan said she found “most troubling” a clause requiring Apple to pay only $70 million if an appeals court reversed her finding that the company is liable for antitrust violations and sent it back to her for further proceedings.

Apple was found guilty of price-fixing, an allegation it always denied and is currently appealing. To speed things up, lawyers on both sides agreed what would happen for each of the three possible outcomes of the appeal.

If Apple wins the appeal, it will pay nothing. If it loses the appeal, it will pay $50M in legal costs and $400M to a compensation fund for consumers. The contentious part is what happens if the appeals court overturns the original verdict but sends the case back for new proceedings. In this event, the proposal is that Apple would pay just $70M, of which the compensation fund would receive $50M.

Cote questioned if that would be fair and what might happen if the appeals court reversed her ruling on a minor issue.

This is not the first example of post-trial arguments, Apple having earlier called for the removal of the court-appointed antitrust monitor, a request rejected by the court.

ebooks trial Stories January 13, 2014

Following Apple’s formal request last week that Michael Bromwich be removed from his role in ensuring the Cupertino company meets compliances set by the anti-trust ruling in last year’s ebooks trial, the Department of Justice has pushed back (via GigaOm) with a denial letter accusing Apple of ‘character assassination’.

Regrettably, it is now clear that Apple has chosen a campaign of character assassination over a culture of compliance. Apple could have been spending the past months working with the External Compliance Monitor with the ultimate goal of reforming its policies and training, and in the process change its corporate tone to one that reflects a commitment to abiding by the requirements of the antitrust laws. Instead, Apple has focused on personally attacking Mr. Bromwich, and thwarting him from performing even the most basic of his court-ordered functions. expand full story

ebooks trial Stories January 8, 2014

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After earlier complaining that the company was being overcharged by the court-appointed lawyer overseeing its compliance with the terms of the ebooks anti-trust ruling, Apple has now brought matters to a head by asking for Michael Bromwich to be removed from the role, reports Reuters.

An attorney for the consumer technology giant on Tuesday asked U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan to disqualify Michael Bromwich from serving as an external compliance monitor, arguing he had shown a personal bias against the company.

In a letter to Cote, Apple’s lawyer cited a “wholly inappropriate declaration” filed by Bromwich last month …  expand full story

ebooks trial Stories August 5, 2013

Does ebook trial signal time for RealPolitik in AAPL’s relationship to Washington and the courts?

A piece on political news site Politico suggests that Apple’s position of trying to remain aloof from political lobbying and defending lawsuits on principle rather than pragmatism may now be proving a luxury it can no longer afford.

The company marches to its own iTunes, spending little on lobbying, rarely joining trade associations and, in a pattern that’s become more pronounced this summer, refusing to negotiate or settle in many lawsuits.

Experts say Apple’s tried-and-true approach is starting to backfire, as the company has already taken at least one big hit in a high-profile e-books trial …

Apple was the only one of the six defendants in the ebook price-fixing case not to settle – and the result looks likely to be a costly one. Both Apple and Samsung have refused to settle many of their extensive patent battles, despite courts urging them to do so. Only days ago, Apple’s continued U.S. sales of iPhone 4s and 3G iPad 2s were saved only by a Presidential veto … 

ebooks trial Stories June 17, 2013

Eddy Cue discusses Steve Jobs’ fascination with page curls, Winnie-the-Pooh, and Ted Kennedy at ebooks hearing

While the litigious quests of Apple seem to never go away (or accomplish much in the process), AllThingsD has collected a few notable tidbits revealed by Eddy Cue, who is fresh off of his WWDC presentation, during the ‘ebooks price fixing’ hearings. Remember folks, Cue was under oath, so this is completely on the books now.

Peter Kafka, for AllThingsD:

For instance:

The “page curls” in the iBook app, which show up when you flip an iBook’s page? That’s Steve Jobs’ idea.

It was Jobs’ idea to pick ““Winnie-the-Pooh” as the freebie book that came with every iBook app. Not just because Jobs liked the book, Cue said, but because it showed off iBook’s capabilities: “It had beautiful color drawings, that had never been seen before in a digital book.”

Jobs was also specific about the book he used to show off the iBook during his initial iPad demo in January 2010. He picked Ted Kennedy’s “True Compass” memoir, because the Kennedy family “meant a lot to him”, Cue said.

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