Supreme Court to decide if App Store class action against Apple should be tossed
Apple and Samsung have been fighting tooth and nail since 2010 over whether the latter should pay the former more than a billion dollars in damages for infringing three design patents. But another court case, Apple v. Pepper being a class action suit, has been going on for nearly as long and may be made or broken by the Supreme Court in the coming months.
Bloomberg reports that the nation’s highest court will grant Apple’s request to review whether the 2011 lawsuit, which alleges anti-competitive control over iOS’s app ecosystem that allows Apple to harvest excessive commissions, should be thrown out.
The company claims that it takes its 30 percent commission from App Store publishers’ revenues and, therefore, the iPhone owners have no grounds to sue. Companies that distribute apps such as Amazon, Facebook and Google would theoretically be affected under Apple’s logic. Apple has since modified its commission structure slightly.
A 1977 SCOTUS decision said only those who purchase a product direct from the company can sue under federal law. The federal appeals court that allowed this case to continue claims that Apple is serving as a distributor and is a direct seller of apps to the consumer.