updated 06:29 pm EDT, Thu August 15, 2013
Plaintiffs found to have suffered no harm over App Store, may refile
A lawsuit claiming that Apple's iTunes App Store is an illegal monopoly -- as it only sells iOS apps, takes a 30 percent commission on sales and disallows third-party iOS app stores -- has been thrown out of court on procedural grounds, since the plaintiffs could not show any grounds for complaint, as they had not purchased the apps challenged in the lawsuit. "At a minimum," wrote the judge in her dismissal order, "plaintiffs must allege facts showing that each named plaintiff has personally suffered an injury-in-fact based on Apple's alleged misconduct."
The lawsuit charges that Apple is guilty of abusing a monopoly by creating an ecosystem in which apps are only available through the App Store, and that prices for those apps are higher than elsewhere because Apple charges a 30 percent distribution fee to the cost. In its motion to dismiss, Apple attorneys pointed out that developers set the prices of apps, and that Apple will sell them even if the cost is zero (meaning no 30 percent cut).
An attorney for the group of plaintiffs that initiated the suit suggested that the conditions the judge set for make the case admissible are "easily met," and thus hinted that the group plans to refile the lawsuit