Apple Fighting Ebook Price-Fixing Charges: 10 Issues in the Case

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2013-06-03 Print this article Print

5. Amazon was the target of that alleged scheme

Although Apple hasn't said so, it's believed that the company and the publishers were deeply concerned with Amazon's dominance in the ebooks market, leading to their working together. Amazon, in other words, was the target of the scheme. And Apple and the publishers wanted nothing more than to end Amazon's dominance in ebooks.

6. Apple has the cash to battle for a while

There's a good chance that the Apple ebooks lawsuit will go on for quite some time.

Apple has said time and again that it believes it's innocent, and if it happens to lose this case, it will undoubtedly appeal to a higher court. It will likely keep appealing even if it loses in the first round. Why? It has the cash to pay for a long, drawn-out case. Why wouldn't it use it?

7. Apple hasn't really proven its side yet

There appears to be a sense in the marketplace that Apple, based on comments made by Jobs and others, was truly to blame for the issue. However, it's worth noting that Apple has yet to publicly defend itself. There might be much more to this case that the public doesn't know, and now Apple has its chance to present its side of the story.

8. The fines could be huge

When the book publishers settled with the government and state attorneys general around the U.S., they paid a relatively paltry sum of cash to get out of the suit. For Apple, though, the fines and penalties related to the lawsuit could be huge. Apple is taking a big, costly risk by going to court.

9. The judge has asked Apple to settle

If the case were up to Judge Cote, it would have never gotten this far. In a pretrial statement on the case, Judge Cote asked that Apple settle the case rather than bring it to a trial. She indicated that it would be in the best interests of all parties—including Apple and the court—to settle and be done with the case. Apple declined.

10. Apple might have been placating publishers

It's hard to say what motivated Apple to get involved in pricing with ebooks, but based on Steve Jobs' correspondence, it might have had more to do with placating publishers than actually generating a boatload of cash for itself. The publishers were scared of Amazon, it seems, and Apple wanted to play a part in ebook sales. In order to do that, it had to play ball with publishers. And it appears it might have played ball.

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