iPod Antitrust trial won by Apple
The jury ruled in favor of Apple in the class-action lawsuit in which the company was accused of stifling competition for its iPod music players.
Apple responded in a statement, “Every time we’ve updated those products—and every Apple product over the years—we’ve done it to make the user experience even better”. The plaintiff said that the company’s iTunes 7.0 update made the service incompatible with other devices. It was also said to increase the price of iPods.
The plaintiffs were representing about 8 million consumers who were affected by the update and were seeking almost $350 million in damages and if the company was found to have violated the antitrust law, the damages would have tripled. Apple’s lawyers also said that it was one of the rare cases where a jury made a decision on the improvement of earlier versions.
Usually, in cases like these, only a single judge makes a decision. Patrick Coughlin, a lawyer representing the plaintiffs said that they were happy that the case went to a jury but also said that it was a very tough case. He also said that the plaintiffs want to appeal the jury’s decision.
A law professor at Rutgers University in New Jersey said, “Very few of these cases make it this far.” He also said that Apple needs to show “a little bit of a product improvement and then it gets thrown out.” With the ruling, a 10 year legal battle comes to an end over iPod and the jurors had to time-travel to a decade ago when the product was first introduced.