DoJ Claims Apple Implemented In-App Purchase Rules to 'Retaliate Against Amazon'

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    The Department of Justice today filed a revised punishment proposal for Apple in its ongoing e-book dispute with the company, reports GigaOM.

    While the new proposal is largely the same as the original, it includes an expanded section on Apple's in-app purchasing policies along with the accusation that Apple initiated the rules specifically to "retaliate against Amazon for competitive conduct that Apple disapproved of" and to "make it more difficult for consumers using Apple devices to compare ebook prices among different retailers."

    When Apple debuted App Store subscriptions back in 2011, it instituted a rule that prevented developers offering subscription and purchased content from including direct links to stores that would bypass the in-app purchase system. As a result, e-book retailers like Amazon and other digital media providers were forced to remove links to outside content.

    Though Apple has argued that its App Store policies are unrelated to the e-books case, the Department of Justice disagrees and maintains that Apple should be forced to re-allow links to outside bookstores within apps. As part of its own argument, the DoJ points out that Apple does not receive a 30 percent cut for all goods sold through its App Store and likens digital e-books to physical goods.
    As evidence that Apple was conspiring to raise prices to punish Amazon, the Department of Justice submitted an email from Steve Jobs to Phil Schiller and Eddy Cue, which specifically mentions an Amazon Kindle commercial and suggests Apple force books, newspapers, and magazines to use Apple's "far superior payment system."

    Along with the new evidence, the DoJ continues to insist that e-book retailers should be allowed "costless hyperlinks" in their App Store apps for a two-year period.
    The revised proposal also cuts the proposed injunction time against Apple in half, but continues to require the nullification of existing agency model deals and the implementation of a third party monitor to ensure Apple's continued adherence to internal antitrust compliance policies.

    According to Bloomberg, Apple has objected to the revised government proposal, saying that an outside compliance monitor isn't necessary.

    Article Link: DoJ Claims Apple Implemented In-App Purchase Rules to 'Retaliate Against Amazon'
  2. HenryDJP macrumors 603

    Nov 25, 2012
    United States
    Well who can blame Apple? If Amazon is trying to steal or profit from their customers then I see no reason for Apple not to take action.
  3. FrizzleFryBen macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    There just seems so much wrong with this, but I'm having the hardest time coming up with a really good analogy to show precedence. Everything I can think of, I can quickly argue against.
  4. BJMRamage macrumors 68020


    Oct 2, 2007
    Seems if you purchase something to use on/within the iOS device, Apple takes a cut, but if it is something not related to an iOS device, Apple does not take a cut.
  5. GenesisST macrumors 68000


    Jan 23, 2006
    Where I live
    Mariage and cheating? Maybe after the first man (or woman) cheated on his/her spouse, they had to remove the "store" button...

    I guess neither can I!
  6. rdlink macrumors 68040


    Nov 10, 2007
    Out of the Reach of the FBI
    Two things:

    First, what examples does the DOJ have that Apple does not charge the 30% for everything? This is not a rhetorical question. I would just like to know what the examples are, if they exist.

    Second, the email in the article does not, in and of itself show that Apple conspired to "punish" Amazon for their pricing. To me, it shows internal communications asking what their strategy should be. If the DOJ's assertion is true, one would think that this email thread would have developed into more of a smoking gun as it moved forward. Why doesn't the DOJ show a more developed conversation that would clearly show the conspiracy, assuming there is one?
  7. Brandon263 macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2009
    Beaumont, CA
    Kinda agree with the DOJ on this one. Why can't Apple just compete with Amazon based on prices? It's not like they don't have the money.
  8. Yojimbo007 macrumors 6502


    Jun 13, 2012
    It is becoming overly obviouse that this lunatic judge is in bed with Amazon !
  9. Rogifan macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2011
    I don't get it. I don't use iBooks at all. I use the Nook app. When I want to buy a book I go to and purchase it and then pull it up on my Nook app on my iPad. Pretty easy to do.
  10. mudman2 macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2010
    This has the feel of a woman scorned, some person in DOJ with enough power should take a really close look at whats going on. It sort of reminds me of the Sirius XM merger which was held up because of industry lobbying.

    Who ever is running this needs to be looked at by his/her superiors
  11. nwcs macrumors 65816


    Sep 21, 2009
    Anyone who is looking for good, solid rational thinking should never look at details of law or lawsuits. It always starts designed with common sense but ends up obfuscated with technicalities and personalities.
  12. stuffradio macrumors 65816

    Mar 17, 2009
    Amazon is trying to steal from their customers by charging people a lot less, and paying the author the difference between what they wanted and what Amazon is charging? Right... Apple isn't trying to profit from their customers.
  13. Michael Goff macrumors G4

    Michael Goff

    Jul 5, 2012
    Never understood why Apple deserves 30% of IAP. Applications in general, but they don't need to host IAP content...
  14. duffman9000 macrumors 68000


    Sep 7, 2003
    Costa Mesa
    That's what I thought.
  15. bryanescuela Suspended

    Jun 27, 2008
  16. Shaun, UK macrumors 68040

    Mar 23, 2006
    Maybe it's time for Apple change their business model so that it becomes more closed to competitors. They could easily refuse to approve any app's that offer competitive products, such as the Kindle App, so that iOS users are required to purchase eBooks exclusively from iBooks/iTunes.
  17. Oletros macrumors 603


    Jul 27, 2009
    Premià de Mar

    And exactly what profit is stealing from Apple costumers? Or are you saying that when people buy an plane ticket in an iOS app is stealing from Apple profits?
  18. JAT macrumors 603

    Dec 31, 2001
    Mpls, MN
    Don't know what examples they can use for testimony, but I would say the best place to go is the Amazon app. Can buy anything you want with it. Unlike Amazon's Kindle app, where you can't.
  19. Swift macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2003
    Los Angeles
    Somebody get rid of that DoJ guy

    Here's the thing: Amazon is given all this praise, but without VC money and the stock market, they'd be out of business. After 15+ years. They are the Walmart of online. Yes, the prices are low, but just so they can drive everybody out of business. And why has no Mike Daisey-- well, a truth-telling Daisey-- never exposed the miserable pay and conditions in Amazon's warehouses?
  20. Oletros macrumors 603


    Jul 27, 2009
    Premià de Mar
    Amazon app, ebay app for example
  21. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    Can you get Apple iBooks from Amazon? How about Google apps? All these companies restrict their content to their devices, but everyone seems to want a ride on the Apple ecosystem.

    Let's see the DOJ try to force Ford dealers to sell Chevy products. And I'm not talking about the used car lot.

  22. edwurtle, Aug 23, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2013

    edwurtle macrumors member


    Apr 13, 2010
    Think physical goods that are shipped:

    Buy a saxophone from inside EBAY app.
    Buy a TV from inside Amazon app.
    Buy memory from inside a Newegg app.
    Buy a potato from the grocery store app.

    Or think about airline tickets/travel:

    Buy a trip to vegas from inside the travelocity app.

    Or tickets to entertainment/sports:

    Buy a movie ticket from inside fandago app
    Buy a concert ticket from inside ticketmaster app
    Buy a superbowl ticket from inside stubhub app
  23. Oletros macrumors 603


    Jul 27, 2009
    Premià de Mar
    It is becoming overly obvious that you don't have read the article
  24. mj1108 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 7, 2007
    Apple doesn't want to compete with Amazon because Amazon uses books as a loss leader. People buy books on Amazon and end up buying other stuff as well. Apple doesn't want to sell the books at a loss in hopes of people buying apps or music.
  25. piecloud macrumors member

    Nov 9, 2011
    What if MS wants to take a cut of every iTunes purchase on Windows?

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