Print 46 comment(s) - last by Lord Evermore.. on Jan 3 at 7:57 PM

The hip computer maker battles with another headache

Shortly following news of Apple’s stock options backdating scandal, the Associated Press is reporting that the company is now facing several lawsuits, including one alleging that Apple is monopolizing the digital music market.

The lawsuit is over Apple’s proprietary iPod and iTunes software, which is generally incompatible with non-Apple products. Media purchased on iTunes is supposed to be playable only on iPod hardware, and songs purchased on other DRM systems are not easily playable on iPods.

Apple motioned for the courts to dismiss the case, originally filed July 21, but the courts denied the motion on Dec. 20. The plaintiff seeks unspecified compensation.

Apple is also facing a lawsuit, filed on Nov. 7, over the supposed high failure rate of the logic board in the iBook G4. Another lawsuit filed by PhatRat Technology accuses Apple of patent infringement for its iPod-Nike product.

While the iPod reigns supreme in the music player market, Apple’s success has not come without a price. Last year, Creative Labs sued Apple over patent infringement of the iPod interface, which eventually lead to a countersuit. The companies eventually settled on having Apple pay Creative $100 million for use of the patented technology.

The popularity of the iPod has drawn attention from hackers discontent with the proprietary nature of the device. Jon Lech Johansen, who cracked DVD encryption, has undone Apple’s protection scheme and plans to license his work to companies interested in opening up interoperability between iPod/iTunes and non-Apple devices.

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Missing the point
By stevel114 on 1/3/2007 2:59:54 PM , Rating: 2
I think some of you are missing the point of why Apple keeps the doors shut on other MP3 players. The iTunes song catalog is the largest in the market. So for you to get to the songs you want then you have to buy a iPod. I personally use Napster which is second in the market. I have a Creative Vision M which works great. I do wish that if I wanted I could shop around and find all the music I wanted but I can't because Apple keeps it doors closed to my MP3 player. Recently I bought a Zune, but again the Zune music site will only allow Zune players. I think this is such a rip off to all the music artists because I can only buy from some sites and not others. Try and get any songs from the Beatles. Can't because only Apple has them. Think of the sells that are being missed. That is why I think Apple should open it's doors for any MP3 player.

RE: Missing the point
By Lord Evermore on 1/3/2007 7:57:48 PM , Rating: 2
Apple isn't required to make sure that other people are able to get sales, or that artists are able to get the widest possible exposure. It's up to the copyright holders to license the various stores to be able to sell that music widely. If they don't WANT to let some other outlet sell the music, that's their fault, and "artists" need to complain to the executives they made deals with, not the retail outlet, and consumers should complain to any online store which choses not to make a deal with the content providers, or the providers which choose not to make their content available to other stores. Not complain that Apple ought to support other players just because you can't buy the content elsewhere (which in fact you can, buy a CD).

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke
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