Apple reportedly settles US ebooks case out of court

Judge's gavel

Apple has reportedly settled a US court case over ebook pricing out of court and is declining to comment on its outcome.

The case was brought against Apple and a collection of publishers in 2012, and accused the firm of colluding to keep ebook prices artificially high. Apple faced an $840m claim if found guilty.

The five publishers also involved in the case have already committed to settlements, but Apple was the subject of additional claims. Reuters reported that US District Judge in Manhattan Denise Cote has given the parties 30 days to submit a final settlement.

Apple was seen as the ringleader in the case, and when it was found guilty last July it immediately set about appealing. Judge Cote’s decision is the result of that.

In her ruling at the time, Cote wrote: “Understanding that no one publisher could risk acting alone in an attempt to take pricing power away from Amazon, Apple created a mechanism and environment that enabled them to act together in a matter of weeks to eliminate all retail price competition for their ebooks.

“The evidence is overwhelming that Apple knew of the unlawful aims of the conspiracy and joined that conspiracy with the specific intent to help it succeed. Apple seized the moment and brilliantly played its hand. Without Apple’s orchestration of this conspiracy, it would not have succeeded as it did in the spring of 2010.”

Apple’s argued then that it had done nothing wrong. “Apple did not conspire to fix ebook pricing and we will continue to fight against these false accusations,” it said at the time.

V3 contacted Apple for confirmation of the out of court settlement but had received no reply at the time of publication.

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17 June 2014 | 10:46 am – Source: v3.co.uk
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