After Reaching Two Antitrust Deals With Apple, Same Law Firm Files New Case

A law firm that successfully negotiated two Apple antitrust deals is taking on the Cupertino company again.

Hagens Berman, who won a $560 million e-book settlement, and most recently $100 million App Store, is again targeting a 15% or 30% cut in iOS app sales from ‘Apple…

Apple Antitrust Regulations by Hagens Berman

Apple was found guilty of artificially controlling the price of ebooks in 2013, a practice that later saw law firm Hagens Berman obtain payouts for customers who purchased ebooks from Apple over a two-year period.

The same company was also behind a more recent class action lawsuit on behalf of small developers. The total settlement was $100 million – paid through a mechanism that allowed Apple to turn it into a PR gain – although the judge questioned the company’s 27% cut.

Lawyers are also fighting an Apple Pay antitrust lawsuit on behalf of the banks, alleging anticompetitive practices by forcing card issuers to sign up for Apple Pay if they want to get their cards in the Wallet app.

New antitrust case on the App Store

Now the company is seeking a similar settlement to the App Store, this time in France. They work with Paris-based antitrust lawyer Fayrouze Masmi-Dazi. While there are only three plaintiffs to date, the lawyers are inviting all French promoters to join the case.

The plaintiffs named are the developers of the Figaro news application, the L’Équipe sports application and GESTE, a French association of online content publishers.

Proposed class action lawsuit seeks to force Apple to end its abusive monopoly, end pricing mandates that reimburse developers for overcharges due to abuse of its monopoly power […]

“We’re fresh out of our hard-won deal with Apple and ready to get back in the ring,” said Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman and an attorney representing the proposed class of iOS developers. “Our company is happy to see iOS developers in other countries demanding the same justice we were able to achieve for US developers. We believe that they, too, have been unjustly subjected to the stifling policies of Apple’s App Store, and we intend to uphold the law with Apple.

“The GESTE and its members are indeed at the forefront of several initiatives and fights for a more balanced and equitable functioning of the digital world in France and in Europe. By its nature and scale, today’s action shows our determination to demand such changes and reparations,” said Bertrand Gié, president of GESTE and head of digital at Le Figaro and Emmanuel Alix, vice-president of GESTE. and head of digital at L’Equipe.

“Apple’s policies and restrictions pose critical issues for all iOS developers using the App Store. For a global problem, there will be a global solution. I believe that we can build strong bridges to design impactful actions, because we will leave no room for impunity,” said Fayrouze Masmi-Dazi, GESTE antitrust lawyer and lawyer representing the proposed class of iOS developers in association with Steve Berman.

Although the case is on behalf of French developers, it was filed in California.

The case was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, bringing the France-based developers’ claims to Apple’s court. He accuses Apple of engaging in anti-competitive practices by mandating only one app store for iOS devices, which has paved the way for Apple to abuse its market power.

The company will also seek agreements similar to those obtained in the original US case.

Small US iOS developers will also benefit from a commitment that for at least three years after the court approves the settlement, Apple will not increase the 15% commission rate that applies to people participating in its program. for small businesses.

Among other benefits of the settlement, Apple will allow all US iOS developers to communicate with their customers outside of their apps on purchase methods other than Apple’s IAP system. Apple will also remove the ban on US developers using information obtained in their apps to communicate with their customers outside of their apps about using non-DPI shopping methods, subject to consent. of the consumer and guarantees of deactivation.

Image: Alexander Shatov/Unsplash

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