The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has urged local retailers to voice their concerns about eBook price-fixing as it considers a lawsuit against Apple and five of the world’s largest book publishers, The Financial Review reported on Thursday. “The ACCC has previously stated that impediments to emerging competition involving online traders is an area of priority,” a spokesperson said. “Competition concerns may arise where traders seek to restrict the discounting of products by way of respective arrangements with suppliers. Retailers with concerns should raise them with the ACCC.” The United States Department of Justice on Wednesday filed a similar suit against Apple, Simon & Schuster, Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, Penguin Group and Macmillan for allegedly conspiring to fix eBook prices. More →
An Australian court on Tuesday ruled that Google engaged in “misleading and deceptive” advertising practices, Reuters reported. The court said that between March 2006 and July 2007, Google published search results for queries related to Honda Australia with paid advertisements for Honda competitor CarSales. The advertisements led users to believes that CarSales was linked to Honda Australia. The search giant argued that it was not responsible for misleading search results since it was merely a conduit for advertisers. The court disagreed, however, and ordered Google to set up a compliance program that will ensure paid advertisements will not mislead consumers. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission praised the ruling, saying that Google and other Internet search engines will now be held responsible for “deceptive paid search results.” More →
Apple’s hot new iPad tablet has been a massive global success. The company recently announced that it sold more than 3 million new slates in fewer than four days of availability, making it the second most successful launch in the Apple’s history behind the iPhone 4S. Heat issues aside, Apple found itself in a bit of hot water earlier this week when Australian regulators took issue with Apple’s use of the term “4G” in its advertising. The new iPad indeed supports 4G LTE networks internationally, but is it not compatible with Telstra’s Australian 4G network. Apple argued in Federal Court on Wednesday that its iPad can connect to Australian HSPA networks which are considered to be “4G” in other markets, but the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission didn’t bite and neither did the court. In the end, ABC News in Australia reports that Apple agree to issue a statement clarifying that the new iPad does not support Telstra’s LTE network, and it will offer a refund to any buyers who feel they have been misled by Apple’s 4G claims. More →
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on Tuesday claimed that Apple is using misleading promotions for its new iPad tablet, Reuters reported. The ACCC will ask an Australian high court on Wednesday to order the Cupertino-based company to make customers aware of the true technical capabilities of the device, correct its current advertising and refund any affected buyers. Apple’s newest iPad can utilize 4G LTE networks, however it can only do so in North America. The company has still advertised the device as a “4G” tablet in countries where it is not compatible. Australian carrier Telstra offers the country’s only 4G LTE network, but it uses different spectrum than carriers in the United States and Canada. More →
WikiLeaks announced that its founder and leader Julian Assange is planning to run for a seat on the Australian Senate, the Associated Press reported on Saturday. Despite being under house arrest in England and facing sex crime allegations in Sweden, the group said it is possible for Assange to run. “We have discovered that it is possible for Julian Assange to run for the Australian Senate while detained. Julian has decided to run,” WikiLeaks announced on Twitter. The group also announced that it would be supporting a candidate who will run against Prime Minister Julia Gillard for her seat of Lalor. “The name of the Lalor candidate and the state Julian will run for will be announced at the appropriate time,” the group said. Assange has criticized Gillard for her lack of support as he faced the threat of extradition to the United States over WikiLeaks’s release of classified U.S. documents. While Australian police have said that WikiLeaks and Assange have not broken any Australian laws, Gillard condemned the action, calling it “grossly irresponsible.” More →
As Samsung continues to field repeated patent-related strikes from Apple in Australia and around the world, the Cupertino-based company’s aggressive stance seems to be having an unforeseen side effect in some cases. As Apple continues to inadvertently help Samsung advertise its products across the Australian region, market research firm IDC revealed on Monday that the South Korea-based electronics giant passed Apple in the third quarter to become the No.1 mobile phone vendor in Australia and New Zealand. Read on for more. More →
Samsung recently won a appeal lawsuit against Apple in Australia that overturned a ban on sales of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the country. An appeals court, which recently said the ban was “not terribly fair” to Samsung, explained that the original judge in a lower court had made a mistake in approving Apple’s request for an injunction against the tablet. “We cannot see how Samsung’s conduct in refusing the offer of an early trial could properly be weighed,” the appeals court said, noting that the original court “erred in principle” for basing part of its decision on a ban on that ruling. Samsung is allowed to resume sales of the tablet beginning on December 2nd, Bloomberg noted. “The ruling clearly affirms that Apple’s legal claims lack merit,” Samsung spokesman Nam Ki Yung remarked. Read on for more. More →
An appeals judge in Australia recently said that a ruling which banned Samsung’s local subsidiaries from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 was unfair to Samsung. “The result looks terribly fair to Apple and not terribly fair to Samsung,” federal court justice Lindsay Foster said on Friday. Samsung’s lawyer Neil Young said the lawyer in the original case, federal court justice Annabelle Bennett, failed to take into consideration the “dire consequences” that the ban would have on Samsung during the holiday shopping season. “We contend that the primary judge made a series of fundamental errors in her disposition of the interlocutory application,” a Samsung attorney said. “They were all errors of principle.” Samsung hopes to hear whether or not the injunction will be lifted early next week. Samsung’s Australian counter suit against Apple, in which Samsung is seeking a ban on Apple’s iPhone and iPad products, will be held in March. The two companies have legal battles ongoing around the world, including in Germany, The Netherlands, France, Japan and the United States. More →
Australian Federal Court Justice Annabelle Bennett has ruled that Apple must show Samsung its contracts with Vodafone, SingTel and Telstra if it cannot reach an agreement on Samsung’s accusations that the iPhone maker contractually forces the carriers to subsidize the iPhone. Samsung has also argued that the Apple iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPad 2 and iPhone 3GS infringe on its patents, and has sought to ban sales of the devices in Australia. Apple, however, has already successfully banned Samsung’s Australia-based subsidiaries from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet. “We will resist any attempts by our friends to push us into a corner,” Apple lawyer Andrew Fox said. “This is quite clearly a fishing expedition.” Earlier this month, Samsung requested the iPhone 4S source code and, according to Bloomberg, Apple provided the company with 220 pages of code, but left out one file. Samsung also has ongoing lawsuits with Apple in Japan, Germany, France and the United States.
Samsung recently asked Apple to provide it with source code for the the firmware used in its iPhone 4S, ZDNET reported on Tuesday. The South Korea-based phone maker also asked for details on Apple’s subsidy agreements with Australian carriers Vodafone, Optus and Telstra. The moves were part of an ongoing lawsuit in which Samsung has accused Apple of infringing on three of its patents. Apple believes Samsung has no need to access the information, but Samsung’s lawyer argued that there are fewer subsidies available for Samsung’s products if subsidies are given for the iPhone 4S. Additionally, the source code may be just as important in proving that Apple is infringing on patents. Read on for more. More →
Samsung has appealed a ruling by an Australian court that prevents it from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the country in an effort to get the tablet on store shelves in time for the holidays. Samsung attorney Neil Young accused Justice Annabelle Bennett of making “irrelevant considerations” and “making errors of law in her approach” to the injunction. The request for an appeal hearing will be granted by Justice Lindsay Foster, likely for the week of November 21st, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. Samsung and Apple are currently locked in a number of legal battles around the globe. Apple has successfully blocked Samsung’s local retailers in Australia and The Netherlands from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1. In addition, similar lawsuits are ongoing in the United States, Japan and France.
Samsung recently filed lawsuits in Japan and Australia in an attempt to prevent Apple from selling the iPhone 4S. In addition, Samsung is seeking to block the sale of the iPad 2 and the original iPhone 4 in Japan, Bloomberg said Monday. In September, the South Korea-based phone maker also filed motions to ban the iPhone 4S in France and Italy. “Apple has continued to violate our patent rights and free ride on our technology,” Samsung said. “We will no longer stand idly by and will steadfastly protect our intellectual property.” Apple filed similar lawsuits against Samsung in the United States, Australia, Japan, France and the Netherlands. The iPhone maker successfully prevented Samsung’s local subsidiaries from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia and the Galaxy S, Galaxy Ace and Galaxy S II in the Netherlands. Samsung recently announced that it will tweak its the aforementioned smartphones in an effort to dodge the European sales ban. More →