Canada court to order Apple to turn over records in iPhone probe

“The Federal Court of Canada agreed on Wednesday to order Apple Inc’s Canadian subsidiary to turn over documents to the Competition Bureau to help investigate whether Apple unfairly used its market power to promote the sale of iPhones,” Reuters reports.

“In seeking the order, the Competition Bureau had said agreements Apple negotiated with wireless carriers may have cut into competition by encouraging the companies to maintain or boost the price of rival phones,” Reuters reports.

Brief article in full here.

Related articles:
Apple behavior in Canada may have raised prices, court filing claims – December 12, 2014
Canada competition watchdog probing Apple iPhone carrier deals – December 11, 2014

35 Comments

    1. Not here we go again. Anti-competitive behaviour in business is terrible for consumers. Whether anyone likes it or not, we need the government, or else we’d all be stealing from each other and ripping each other’s throats out a lot more than we do now.

      The Competition Bureau is to protect you, not Apple. And you should be happy things like this exist. It’s a probe, not a lawsuit. If they find nothing, then carry on. If they find something, then something might happen. I’m Canadian and the Feds aren’t looking for a handout: Canada isn’t a third world country. This is black and white a legitimate inquiry by a wealthy country and respected government so relax.

      It’s part of a larger push in Canada to “clean up” the mobile telecom industry. This is simply a part of that. And what we as consumers have benefited by the government stepping in on the wireless industry over the past year here is nothing short of excellent. Go check out the WIND Mobile story. I’m with WIND now. Pay $35 per month: unlimited text, data, and calling across Canada and the US. It’s because of the Canadian Government’s push to foster more competition in the wireless industry that this stuff has become possible.

      1. Wow, “It’s part of a larger push in Canada to “clean up” the mobile telecom industry.”

        Apple is of little concern when poking a hot iron at the Canadian telcos. They are a government sanctioned monopoly… Can’t say much with out looking hypocritical.

      2. Dftr, Yes…. But.

        why Apple? Apple has proven to be the good guy over and over again. Yet they have lots of money, so lets investigate them, fine them big time, and give the money to… customers?? No to the government for more boondoggle projects.

        Amazon is the huge monopoly and it wants to keep it that way, yet Apple is the one dragged into court by the DoJ for trying to ???? enter a market???

        I do want the government to help watch out for big bad companies, but sadly their push is for big rich good companies.

        Bad guys know its bad and they know how to hide the crime.

        good guys don’t worry cause they are lawful yet they get charged anyway. Its just so sad.

        Just saying.

        1. eldernorm:

          Neither you nor I know what is happening. You cannot say with any certainty in this case that Apple has done nothing wrong neither can you say they have done wrong. Neither can I.

          Apple is just a company. I also have differing opinions about the eBook case but nevermind. We’ll see what comes out of this. They may find nothing or they may find that Apple was involved in something like increasing prices, who knows. We’ll find out.

      3. “It’s part of a larger push in Canada to “clean up” the mobile telecom industry. ” “The Competition Bureau is to protect you, not Apple. ”

        Consumers have NOT benefited from government agencies, especially in the telco area. I would cite the many examples, but there is no reason. You and other Canadians ‘know’. The rest of the world doesn’t care. I normally do not get incensed by such comments, but yours is one for the books, it is so untrue. Go back to your job as Stephen Harper’s press secretary and stop the BS (beaver shit).

  1. Then why do I keep hearing that I could get a better phone for less money if I switched to Android? At Rogers, I have to be on the most expensive plans they offer if I want an iPhone, but they have several cheaper plans on offer if I choose an Android phone (other than the most expensive “Flagship” phones).

    1. Yup. I pay $100 per month for my iPhone… and it’s long been paid for. I own it 10 times over… yet I am requires to keep paying these outrageous prices if I want the decent connection. Been this way for 6 years now.

      My current contract ends in February. I think I’ll check out WIND next time.

  2. I do not understand how (or why) Apple would want to sign any agreements with carriers that would have the effect of increasing the prices of _competitor_ products. It makes no sense from Apple’s perspective. It makes no sense to me. If someone could explain how this hypothetically would work, I would appreciate it.

    As a separate issue, there is more to competition than price alone. If the iPhone caused an increase in the overall quality of all other phones, not to mention enhanced telephone voice & data services, these improvements alone could account for any observed price rises during the period. You get more, but you pay more, too.

  3. I am a Canadian and I agree with Dfr . Apple’s market share is completely market driven and the mobile companies hardly advertise Apple products and prefer to sell Android , I suspect because their return is higher .
    I think that the real target is Bell , Rogers and Telus who have not really competed(indeed the built the 4G network jointly ) and have a lot to answer for . Apple , in my opinion will be fine . I think the anticompetitive behaviour was in the US a long time ago when AT&T had the iPhone sole to themselves .

            1. I’m mistaken, Cingular purchased AT&T Wireless, then the entire merge was renamed AT&T Mobile. A thousand pardons. My understanding was that Job originally negotiated with Cingular. Here is the Wikipedia account:

              When Apple initially released the iPhone on June 29, 2007,[21] it was sold exclusively with AT&T (formerly Cingular) contracts in the United States.[14] The tying arrangement between Apple’s smartphone and a specific service provider caused some controversy, bringing the concepts of jailbreaking and bricking into the mainstream debate over the future of smartphone technology.

            2. It’s somewhat confusing:

              After a year and a half of negotiations, Steve Jobs reached an agreement with the wireless division of the telecomm giant AT&T (Cingular at the time) to be the iPhone’s carrier. In return for five years of exclusivity, roughly 10 percent of iPhone sales in AT&T stores, and a thin slice of Apple’s iTunes revenue, AT&T granted Apple roughly $10 a month from every iPhone customer’s AT&T bill.[citation needed] In return, consumers were unable to use any other carrier without heavily modifying their device.

            3. My belief is, that is what actually allowed android phones to achieve a foothold in the market. The good news is, in what has happened with the other carriers since that contracted time was over.

    1. “I think the anticompetitive behaviour was in the US a long time ago when AT&T had the iPhone sole to themselves”

      Huh? That has nothing to do with being anti-competitive, in fact it’s just the opposite; you COMPETE by offering unique products and services.

    2. The AT&T exclusive was for 5 long years, and signed when there *was* no iPhone on the market. Hard to be anti-competitive when everyone was saying it would fail.

      And by 2010, this exclusivity was clearly hurting Apple more than helping.

      1. For the record Rogers’s which at one time was owned by AT&T had the sole position in Canada for a short time because the other networks were CDMA not GSM . They quickly switched to GSM and then they all sold iPhones .
        Indeed within a short time Apple sold factory unlocked phones which forced the mobile companies to compete which happened years before the US opened to unlocked phones . That is why Canadian phones sold at a premium on online auctions . They could be system software updated without fear of bricking the phones.
        In this sense we had real competition in the iPhone market in Canada before the US . This is why I think Apple will be OK in this inquiry and the carriers will be nervously scrutinized

  4. Canada court? Really Would you write America court? Mexico court? France court? No? The don’t write Canada court. It’s Canadian. Sheesh.

    BlueMax “For the record Rogers’s which at one time was owned by AT&T …” No. Roger’s was NEVER owned by AT&T. AT&T did own a minority share (34%) of Roger’s Wireless, one of the many division of Roger’s, until 2004 when Roger’s bought said minority position.

  5. Canada court? Really Would you write America court? Mexico court? France court? No? The don’t write Canada court. It’s Canadian. Sheesh.

    >>>BlueMax “For the record Rogers’s which at one time was owned by AT&T …” No. Roger’s was NEVER owned by AT&T. AT&T did own a minority share (34%) of Roger’s Wireless, one of the many division of Roger’s, until 2004 when Roger’s bought said minority position.

  6. Here’s what a well written headline looks like.

    Federal Court of Canada orders Apple to turn over documents in antitrust probe.

    Clean, accurate, and with accurate syntax.

  7. …whether Apple unfairly used its market power to promote the sale of iPhones.

    IOW: Did Apple market the product? I’d say yes.

    …whether Apple Canada contracts may have discouraged wireless carriers from reducing the price of other companies’ handsets, or whether Apple encouraged them to maintain or boost the price of wireless services for competing handsets.

    IOW: Did Apple’s marketing of its product influence the pricing behavior of wireless carriers? I’d say no. How about being a little less vague Canada? This is coming off as just another witch hunt with flaming arrows aimed at the biggest target you can find. This behavior impresses WHO exactly?

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