Apple: E-Book Collusion Claims Simply Not True


Apple says the DoJ is wrong to suggest the iPhone maker did anything illegal

Apple has bitten back over claims it was colluding with publishers in charging high prices for e-books, saying the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) allegations were “simply not true”.

Apple spokesperson Natalie Kerris said it was the publishers who were setting the prices, not the iPhone maker.

“Just as we’ve allowed developers to set prices on the App Store, publishers set prices on the iBookstore,” Kerris told the Wall Street Journal. “The launch of the iBookstore in 2010 fostered innovation and competition, breaking Amazon’s monopolistic grip on the publishing industry.”

“Baffling” cost

The DoJ sued Apple on Wednesday along with five big book publishers. The Justice Department said that by allowing publishers to set their own prices, Apple was one of the parties forcing consumers to pay too much for e-books.

Many agree that e-books cost too much. Most are the same or only a little less than paperbacks, which has concerned onlookers who note that overheads are significantly lower with virtual copies.

William Boyd, the author who will be writing the next James Bond novel, told BBC Radio 4 yesterday he thought it was “baffling why they were so expensive.”

“The costs are very low to produce an e-book I would think,” Boyd added. “There’s a huge state of flux at the minute, nobody really knows what’s going to happen, whether e-book sales are going to plateau out.

“But from a writer’s point of view, the more people reading, the better.”

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