On Tuesday, May 11, Apple faced possible further court action over its App Store after it was accused of “overcharging” millions of app-purchasers in the UK.
The claim, filed by digital economy expert Rachael Kent but not yet given the greenlight by Britain’s Competition Appeal Tribunal, calls on the US technology giant to repay customers.
As many as 19.6 million UK users could be eligible for compensation totaling up to US$2.1 billion, the file claims.
It comes after Britain’s competition regulator in March launched an investigation into Apple focusing on the US technology giant’s use of its App Store.
Kent, a lecturer at King’s College, University of London, argues that because the App Store is the only way to get apps on to an iPhone or iPad, it is behaving like a monopoly.
“The App Store was a brilliant gateway for a range of interesting and innovative services that millions of us find useful, myself included,” she added in a statement.
“But thirteen years after its launch, it has become the only gateway for millions of consumers.”
Kent said “Apple guards access to the world of apps jealousy, and charges entry and usage fees that are completely unjustified.
“This is the behavior of a monopolist and is unacceptable.”
Responding to the accusations, Apple described the planned lawsuit as “meritless,” pointing to the company’s “unwavering commitment to consumers and the many benefits the App Store has delivered to the UK’s innovation economy.”