A federal judge says a monopoly abuse lawsuit against Apple Inc. and AT&T Inc.’s mobile phone unit can move forward as a class action, reports the Associated Press. The lawsuit consolidates several filed by iPhone buyers starting in late 2007, a few months after the first generation of Apple’s smart phone went on sale. An amended complaint filed in June 2008 takes issue with Apple’s practice of “locking” iPhones so they can only be used on AT&T’s network, and its absolute control over what applications iPhone owners can and cannot install on the gadgets. The lawsuit also says Apple secretly made AT&T its exclusive iPhone partner in the U.S. for five years. Consumers agreed to two-year contracts with the Dallas-based wireless carrier when they purchased their phones, but were in effect locked into a five-year relationship with AT&T, the lawsuit argues. The actions hurt competition and drove up prices for consumers, the suit claims. The lawsuit seeks an injunction to keep Apple from selling locked iPhones in the U.S. and from determining what iPhone programs people can install. It also seeks damages to cover legal fees and other costs. The class-action suit includes anyone who bought an iPhone with a two-year AT&T agreement since the device first went on sale in June 2007…

Click here for the full story

About the Author:

Denny Carter

Dennis has covered higher education technology since April 2008, having interviewed some of the most recognized IT pros in U.S. colleges and universities. He is always updating eCampus News with the latest in pressing ed-tech issues, such as the growing i