Apple has agreed to pay in the region of $450 million USD over claims that it conspired with publishers to fix the prices of ebooks and stifle competition in the market.
Since the case began in April 2012, Apple has been forced to settle with all five publishers involved in the controversy, costing the fruity company around $166 million. The settlement was announced last month, but the details of the settlement had not come to light. It is understood that this payment is to be made to consumers if Apple loses an appeal over a 2013 ruling that Apple violated anti-trust laws in determining the pricing of its ebooks. If that appeal is recognised, Apple will not be required to pay the $400 million to consumers, and a further $20 million in legal fees.
This settlement news comes as a further damages trial, penned for August 225 looms. In that case, lawyers standing for consumers and 33 US states will sue Apple for around $840 million in damages, to be paid to consumers who have been charged too much for ebooks because of price-fixing.
In terms of you, the consumer. It may emerge that you have indeed paid over the odds for ebooks and you may well be entitled to compensation in the matter. Certainly, in the long term, this trial will ensure that future pricing of ebooks is made fairly, and that competition will force Apple to compete with other ebook vendors to ensure customers are getting the best prices available.
Do you think you pay too much for ebooks from Apple? Leave your thoughts and comments below!