Apple is the defendant in a class action lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, brought by unhappy consumers who purchased an iPhone from October 19, 2008 to February 3, 2011.   The lawsuit stems from a 2007 five-year exclusivity agreement that Apple entered into with AT&T, whereby iPhones were only to be used on AT&T’s network.

What is the Problem?

  • Consumers allege that Apple has violated antitrust laws
  • The plaintiffs claim that Apples agreement with AT&T violates the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, because it prevents buyers from taking their phones to the wireless network of their choice
  • The plaintiffs claim that Apples agreement with AT&T violates the Sherman Act because it does not obtain the buyers contractual consent prior to locking iPhone buyers into voice and data contracts with AT&T

What Do These Consumers (Plaintiffs) Want?

  • They want Apple to disclose that their iPhones are locked prior to selling them to consumers
  • They want Apple to be prohibited from keeping their consumers from unlocking their SIM cards
  • They want Apple to provide SIM unlock codes upon request

To read the complaint, click here.

Do you think plaintiffs will prevail in this lawsuit against Apple?

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