Canadian government details antitrust charges against Apple

Posted:
in iPhone edited December 2014
Just days after Canada's Competition Bureau announced that it would look into the details of Apple's contracts with wireless carriers, a newly-uncovered court filing has shed light on the regulator's allegations of anti-competitive practices.

Apple's Sainte-Catherine store in Montreal.
Apple's Sainte-Catherine store in Montreal.


The agency believes that Apple's terms may have ultimately forced Canadian consumers to pay more for mobile devices and wireless services than they otherwise would have, according to Reuters. The investigation was pubicly revealed late last week, though Apple was informed of the probe in April.

Both Apple and its carrier partners in Canada have been asked to turn over documents dating back to the Canadian introduction of the original iPhone in July 2008. Apple has reportedly delivered "some" documents, while carriers have provided more than 2,500 such records.

Specifically, the Canadian government's competition watchdog is attempting to determine whether or not Apple discourages its carrier partners from offering discounts or incentives to consumers for the purchase of competitive handsets, or in some cases preventing the carriers from offering competitive handsets outright. Additionally, the government believes Apple may have encouraged carriers to offer preferential service plan pricing to iPhone customers.

"The contractual obligations (with the carriers) may therefore increase the price Canadian consumers have paid, are paying or will pay for handset devices and wireless services," the filing reads.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

    The agency believes that Apple's terms may have ultimately forced Canadian consumers to pay more for mobile devices and wireless services than they otherwise would have

     

    Dear Hosers,

     

    APPLE IS NOT THE ONLY COMPANY IN YOUR COUNTRY THAT SELLS PHONES. IF CUSTOMERS HAD FOUND IT TOO EXPENSIVE, THEY WOULD HAVE PURCHASED SOMETHING ELSE FROM SOMEONE ELSE. ALL OF YOU NEED TO BE IMPRISONED FOR STUPIDITY.

     

    Sincerely,

    Aboutta Annexya

  • Reply 2 of 48

    Bull. I REGULALRY see flagships from Samsung, HTC or LG on sale by the Canadian carriers. It's like they can't give them away. To imply Apple is making it so carriers can't offer competitors products is beyond asinine.

  • Reply 3 of 48
    herbapouherbapou Posts: 2,228member
    Lol its the Apple store I go to. I work one street corner from there.

    Regarding the lawsuit, I dont understand it...
  • Reply 4 of 48
    tulkastulkas Posts: 3,757member

    "Additionally, the government believes Apple may have encouraged carriers to offer preferential service plan pricing to iPhone customers."

     

    That's the part that really gets me and really shows they have no idea what they are talking about. Canadian carriers have, for year, had "iPhone" plans that were significantly higher than plans, with identical features, for non-iphones. If you wanted to but an iPhone from a carrier on contract, then you were required to take a plan that was, in some cases, 50% or more higher than if you bought any other phone. 

     

    At best, I would believe that what Apple requested was that if flagship phones from companies X, Y and Z don't require these vastly more expensive plans, then neither should iPhones. The hope would have been that therefore iPhones no longer require uniquely more expensive plans, but the result was that X, Y and Z flagship phones ended up also requiring more expensive plans. That isn't Apple's fault. That is the fault of the Canadian carriers, who coincidently have the highest profit margins in the world. This is just their way of diverting attention from that and blaming anyone else for their high rates.

  • Reply 5 of 48
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
    Hey relax, fellas!

    What's this all aboot?

    Can't we just forget all this and have a nice kraft dinner instead of looking for treasure?
  • Reply 6 of 48

    Dearest WatchDogs,

     

    I would suggest going after Rogers / Bell / Telus! They're the ones who have been rubbing Canadian consumers for years ... unless, of course, you also expect Apple to take care of your "cut"!

     

    Sincerely,

    :smokey: 

  • Reply 7 of 48
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,043member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

     

     

    Dear Hosers,

     

    APPLE IS NOT THE ONLY COMPANY IN YOUR COUNTRY THAT SELLS PHONES. IF CUSTOMERS HAD FOUND IT TOO EXPENSIVE, THEY WOULD HAVE PURCHASED SOMETHING ELSE FROM SOMEONE ELSE. ALL OF YOU NEED TO BE IMPRISONED FOR STUPIDITY.

     

    Sincerely,

    Aboutta Annexya


    you beat me too it, a bunch of idiots. They act like Apple would not allow any other phones to be sold, as it was point out i see all the time the 2 for one deal if you buy a samsung of LG with a new contract. Or get a free phone.

     

    Yeah consumers are complete sheep and buy the most expensive phone on the market because they have no cheap choices. I suspect that with the Iphone came higher rate plans and if you wanted the iphone you have to pay more, why imagine that you want the Top of the line and it cost more.

  • Reply 8 of 48
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,043member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tulkas View Post

     

    "Additionally, the government believes Apple may have encouraged carriers to offer preferential service plan pricing to iPhone customers."

     

    That's the part that really gets me and really shows they have no idea what they are talking about. Canadian carriers have, for year, had "iPhone" plans that were significantly higher than plans, with identical features, for non-iphones. If you wanted to but an iPhone from a carrier on contract, then you were required to take a plan that was, in some cases, 50% or more higher than if you bought any other phone. 

     

    At best, I would believe that what Apple requested was that if flagship phones from companies X, Y and Z don't require these vastly more expensive plans, then neither should iPhones. The hope would have been that therefore iPhones no longer require uniquely more expensive plans, but the result was that X, Y and Z flagship phones ended up also requiring more expensive plans. That isn't Apple's fault. That is the fault of the Canadian carriers, who coincidently have the highest profit margins in the world. This is just their way of diverting attention from that and blaming anyone else for their high rates.


     

     

    I think you hit on it, again it that Most Favorite Nation clause coming to light. Apple probable said if you offer any other competing phone to the iphone like a Samsung Galaxy with a lessor contract requirement you had to offer the same on the iphone. This is not like Samsung agreeing to let them BOGO deals since they is Samsung financing that deal. So what do you think the phone companies did, it was easier for them to now offer package deals for other phones since they did not want to offer it on the iphone. They will argue like they did in the book case this clause allowed the books seller to charge a higher pricing than allow Amazon to sell them below cost.

  • Reply 9 of 48

    The Canadian Competition Bureau is just trying to deflect its inability to coverup the high rates charged by the three big Canadian Carriers.  The best way to do this is make sure the name "Apple" appears in your headlines.  Like all the crappy bloggers, trying to make Apple look bad is the best way to get attention.  The allegations don't have to be true, just anti-Apple.

  • Reply 10 of 48
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,385member
    As Canadian- **** my government. Not only because of this, but because they're complete shit all around.
  • Reply 11 of 48
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Disturbia View Post

     

    Dearest WatchDogs,

     

    I would suggest going after Rogers / Bell / Telus! They're the ones who have been rubbing Canadian consumers for years ... unless, of course, you also expect Apple to take care of your "cut"!

     

    Sincerely,

    :smokey: 


     

    Bingo. Pretty bad when I can price out a plan at all three carriers and it comes out to EXACTLY the same price. Every single time. And they want to pretend there's no collusion going on there?

  • Reply 12 of 48
    Quote:


     Specifically, the Canadian government's competition watchdog is attempting to determine whether or not Apple discourages its carrier partners from offering discounts or incentives to consumers for the purchase of competitive handsets, or in some cases preventing the carriers from offering competitive handsets outright.


     

    If Apple is guilty they have done a horrible job.  Walking into any carrier's store you see 100's of Android phones and the workers can't wait to tell you about them.

     

    Due to the carrier's lower share of iOS device sales they never push Apple.  

  • Reply 13 of 48
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,361member
    On a totally unrelated note it appears Ars has been hacked.
  • Reply 14 of 48

    It's fine for me.

  • Reply 15 of 48
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,361member
    It's fine for me.
    It's back to normal now. I expect Ars might mention it soon.

    EDIT: Spoke too soon. Back to a black page with:
    Arse security.

    @nidohax - @metapawd

    cue the music
    "Not every geek with a Commodore64 can hack into NASA"
  • Reply 16 of 48
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    It's back to normal now. I expect Ars might mention it soon.



    EDIT: Spoke too soon. Back to a black page with:

    Arse security.



    @nidohax - @metapawd



    cue the music

    "Not every geek with a Commodore64 can hack into NASA"



    Yep, did it to me. Le sigh, I'm tired of these people.

  • Reply 17 of 48
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,496member
    Sorry Canada, nothing you do at this point is going to rescue your beloved BlackBerry from total obliteration.
  • Reply 18 of 48
    jkichlinejkichline Posts: 1,369member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    The investigation was pubicly revealed late last week, though Apple was informed of the probe in April.

     

    I hate it when I'm pubicly revealed. My pubic parts don't like to be probed...

  • Reply 19 of 48
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,926member
    Fishing expedition.
  • Reply 20 of 48

    Canada finally went down to 2-year contracts instead of the bank-robbing 3-year contracts that they were on. Next up, carriers are required to reduce price plans after the device's value has been paid. Finally.

     

    If anything, the carriers were at fault more than Apple.

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