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Class Action Lawsuit Over iPhone Exclusivity Certified

Article Comments  100+  

Jul 10, 2010, 7:46 AM   by Philip Berne

The class action lawsuit alleging monopoly practices by AT&T and Apple has been certified, meaning the suit can officially move ahead, and the plaintiffs in this case now represent all iPhone buyers in the U.S, Wired magazine reports. The suit revolves around AT&T's early termination policy, which states that subscribers can pay a fee to terminate the contract early so the sub can move to a different carrier. Because the iPhone is only supposed to work on AT&T, users are, in effect, locked into an agreement for the term of AT&T's exclusivity. The suit was originally filed in 2007.



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Jul 10, 2010, 4:41 PM

They should sued Apple to get the Unlock codes

Apple should have release the unlock codes to those who paid full price for their phones or to those At&t customers who completed their contracts and wish to take their phones elsewhere. Suing because you can't use an iphone on sprint or droid on t-mobile is misguided because, as many stated, their networks are incompatible.
I have been saying this same thing since the Idiot-Phone came out.
AT&T or Apple should supply the subsidy unlock codes for customers that either paid full price or completed their contracts.
AT&T is absolutely selfish and greedy.
T-Mobile gives o...

Jul 12, 2010, 6:03 PM

Will some one please...

Teach me how to jerk, tea-tea-teach me how to jerk ๐Ÿคจ
What is it you're wanting to jerk? ๐Ÿ˜›

Jul 11, 2010, 1:21 AM

You guys are going to regret getting your wish.

If AT&T is forced to left the unlock on the iPhone, they will stop subsidizing the iPhone. People will be paying $599 and $699 like they do over seas nad like the first iPhone. The iPhone 4 32GB is currently the most expensive PDA available. I personally could not afford one at the non-subsidized price.

T-Mobiles feeble network does the iPhone no justice, and because T-Mobile customers always complain how expensive everyone else is, I doubt very seriously they would pay the $599 or $699 price either.

Verizon will have the iPhone 4 in January, let's see if it will be unlocked so people could take it to the Sprint Network.
Verizon won't have the iphone 4 in january.

Please explain to me, in what bizzaro world, does a JANUARY launch of a device that will sell MILLIONS of phones make sense?
Even if Verizon will carry some version of iPhone early next year it will not be relevant because Motorola Droid, HTC Incredible, Motorola Droid X, Motorola Droid 2 (when it comes out) and Samsung Fascinate (when it comes out) are and will be much bet...
Isn't the HTC X9000 the most expensive phone, not sure if HTC still sells it but it was like 1500 dollars a year ago.

Jul 10, 2010, 12:11 PM

How come there are no suits over the Motorola Droid?

The Motorola Droid is locked to Verizon's network. You can't take it to Sprint, either. Oh, but it has over twice the ETF that the original iPhone had.

1) Carrier exclusivity is nothing new.
2) ETF's are nothing new.

Not saying I like either one of them.
1. The motorola droid is exlusive, the OS (android) is not.

Again, this will come down to the apps and media content more than hardware.

Still a retarded lawsuit. But most likely this is why.
I bought the HTC Hero on Sprint. I returned it within 30 days later and purchased the Nexus One on T-Mobile instead. All of my purchased android apps automatically downloaded to my Nexus One.

The same is not possible for iPhone.
Because no one has filed it. It sounds kind of bizarre to say it, but people want that damned iPhone on every network they can get it on. There are Android based phones on every network, so the Droid has equivalents out there. Logically, and I am g...
I don't believe that CDMA phones are locked in any way. It's a matter of the carrier allowing the device on their own network, as the carrier needs to add it to its device database, map it to plans, etc.
Simple as that. The BB Storm is also "exclusive" to Verizon Wireless but it's pretty easy to get one flashed over to Cricket or MetroPCS.

Jul 10, 2010, 8:40 AM

Because they have no other choices... right?

It is a extremely well-known fact that the single most common business practice for wireless carriers in the U.S. is to subsidize a phone locked into their specific carrier.

AT&T and Apple never hid the fact that the iPhone was locked onto AT&T, They never hinted in any way that the iPhone could be used, for any reason on any other carrier and the general population knew this.

Signing a new contract with another carrier, or going pre-paid has always meant you get a new phone from that other carrier, or you buy a phone compatible with that network. Common knowledge of this fact alone disallows any mis-understandings about the iPhone's exclusivity.

Unlocked phones have always been a special breed of phones you purchase without a su...
I agree that the case doesn't seem to mean anything, and that it should be thrown out.

But I honestly think that a good portion of this lawsuit is because of the app store. It was the first one that really pushed the concept of paid apps, so peopl...
The bigger issue here is that the device cannot be unlocked, effectively locking the customer to AT&T for the duration of their exclusivity agreement. The solution, to me, seems simple. Allow for SIM subsidy unlock. Clearly, there is a want for unl...
...because you insist on complicating the matter.

Answer me this question:

"Name one other GSM handset for which a legal SIM-unlock code can NEVER be obtained at ANY price for ANY reason."

If your response requires...

Jul 10, 2010, 8:37 PM

how is this different...

from every other At&t or T-mobile phone that isn't unlocked by the manufacturer? I don't get why the iphone is being singled out, this is just how GSM phones work isn't? Other than the fact that Apple has a big target on them i don't get it.
I agree... I could have purchased an LG ENV2 or something similar from VZW and sued them because I couldn't take it and its functions directly to another carrier.

People 'could' actually unlock an iPhone and use it on T-Mobile or another mom-pop (C...
rarodrig26 said:
from every other At&t or T-mobile phone that isn't unlocked by the manufacturer? I don't get why the iphone is being singled out...

The difference is that the iPhone is the only GSM handset in the USA...
Simple. You can have virtually any other GSM phone unlocked upon request by the carrier. No such luck with the iPhone.
itunes was the first platform to really push apps and media this way to the public, where your purchase would follow you as long as you kept the same OS.

Since iOS is only on one carrier, the customers with hundreds invested in apps would have to "...

Jul 12, 2010, 8:10 AM

This is the same as...

Suing McDonald's BC they only serve Coca-cola products
Android Ace

Jul 11, 2010, 12:18 PM

I just hope

that Sprint doesn't get the iPhone.

Let Verizon deal with the temporary gains and long-term losses of carrying the device.

Then again, what with Verizon's recent bashing of the iphone 4's various technical flaws and their heavy investment in the Android OS, I doubt they'll want it, either.
Att, with a significantly higher % of customers on PDA plans than Verizon, only managed to make $3 more in ARPU, which is odd considering each additional smartphone is 30 in the pot. 3 extra per line is a ton of money, but it's not what it should be ...

Jul 10, 2010, 9:02 AM

This Proves...

...that AT&T's network is starting to perceive a negligent network problem that fails to deliver satisfaction. It is beginning to wear on the nerves of their elite subscribers. AT&T has enjoyed the position of proprietary Apple stardom for far too long. This will get ugly.

Apple will blame AT&T for network issues and AT&T will blame Apple for reception issues.

While both have legitimate points, the ultimate loser in the end will be AT&T. Apple will have to offer up their product to other carriers, and AT&T will experience churn.

Perception becomes reality and the reality is that iphone users want their "Perfect" phone on a more perfect network. Regardless of what deficiencies are tagged with either brand.

Honestly no other network can give you what you want on the iPhone. Verizon and sprint runs an old CDMA network and not gsm. You want to see a slow iPhone that can't multitask through the network put millions of users on the verizon or sprint network....
Other carriers be careful what you wish for and remember when your awesome networks start crashing, don't blame Apple! LMAO! ๐Ÿคค
Introduction of a Verizon iPhone anytime soon would signal the beginning of the end for AT&T, and AT&T knows it.

EVERY iPhone owner I've spoken to in the NYC area has sworn they'll jump ship the day the iPhone comes out on Verizon. They're that di...

Jul 10, 2010, 8:14 PM

Main reason for this lawsuit is..

..because people want the iPhone, but don't want to deal with AT&T at all.

Outside of the USA, the iPhone is not a carrier exclusive device.

Verizon, and Sprint might be left out of the iPhone sales, but since T-Mobile is GSM/HSPA+ carrier just like AT&T, it would only be logical for Apple to allow T-Mobile to sell the iPhone too.

The argument about T-Mobile have AWS spectrum vs AT&T's Cellular 850/ PCS 1900 spectrum is getting old. AWS 1700 has been out since 2006, and if Motorola, Samsung, HTC, RIM, and other GSM/CDMA OEMs can make phones with the AWS 1700 band that T-Mobile, and even CDMA/EvDO dual band 1700/1900 phones for MetroPCS, then so can Apple.
terryjohnson16 said:
The argument about T-Mobile have AWS spectrum vs AT&T's Cellular 850/ PCS 1900 spectrum is getting old. AWS 1700 has been out since 2006, and if Motorola, Samsung, HTC, RIM, and other GSM/CDMA OEMs can make pho

Jul 10, 2010, 8:00 AM

let them keep it

Means their network will continue to plummet
ATT should just drop the idiotPhone!
idiotPhones make the ATT network looks bad!
ATT network is not the problem, it' the idiotPhone that keep dropping calls! (my opinion)

Jul 10, 2010, 10:28 AM

Question of the day:

Is anyone here upset enough by not having the iPhone on a network other than AT&T to join in on this lawsuit?

Has anyone on the AT&T sales floor or in AT&T customer care talked to a customer who is planning on suing because they can't use their iPhone elsewhere? (and I'm not talking about the 1,000+ "Imma get me a lawyer" threats we get every day either lol)
nope all of my customers are satisfied with at&t. our 3g service here in south texas is very reliable.
My brother-in-law; he lives in New Jersey.

He was one of the first people to jump on this bandwagon ONLY because he wants the payout. He found out he was eligible, he bought the original iPhone 2 weeks after it came out and has been using the newe...

Jul 10, 2010, 9:35 AM

Dumb dumb dumb.

Wow these people are idiots. I want the hd2 but it's only on t-mobile. Or the evo, damn that's only on sprint. How about the droid x? Damn again, only on verizon... Well looks like I've got to get myself a lawyer and sue every phone manufacture and provider in America. I want an droid x on t-mobile but to have the apple app store and sprints 4g network.... Do it you phone companies or else I'm going to sue! Honesty society is getting stupid. These people who keep suing cell phone companies need to stop because you're just wasting everyones (including your own) time. You can't bring any phone to any other carrier anyway. If it's a verizon phone then it works with verizon, att phone att, sprint works with sprint, and tmobile works with tmobile...
I've seen plenty of iPhones unlocked and running on T-Mobile, that's not too hard for us Americans to do. This is just another frivolous lawsuit against big business to sco
re some cash.
The difference is that all those other examples have phones that use their apps across platforms.

The lawsuit IS dumb.

But it's more about their apps and itunes content than anything else.
๐Ÿ˜‰ Mdana07, I sincerely agree with your statement of people becoming dumber, as well as your statement that people should get all the information prior to signing a TWO YEAR contract. And also, what is the problem with these people anyway? I heard...

Jul 10, 2010, 11:50 AM

thinking for a sec....

so tech ppl know spec wise and network wise the iphone is a bad idea anyway, especially in such massive numbers. IMO it is a gateway phone to the tech stupid to think they have a smartphone, but they are toys so they work en-masse for marketing.

Now why would this case have merit? (just throwing these out there)

1) A single phone manufacturer will not, and refuses, to make a phone for other networks.
2) It increases the cost of other manufacturers who have to catch up.
3) Consumers are only given one network choice.
4) Software was locked to one device and is not portable.
5) Limits entry into market by anyone new
6) The suit has to be 'allowed' in court otherwise it would infringe on the right to free speech
7) Benchmarked again...
Who know maybe, just maybe LTE with both AT&T & Verizon using 700mhz things will be better. But it will take a long time, as in 2013-2015.

Jul 10, 2010, 11:48 AM

Sick of AT&T already

I just want to know my calls won't be dropped or sound like **** half the time. AT&T is god awful where I live but I love my iPhone.

I'm runnin out whats left of my contract with AT&T and then I'm done with it.

Jul 10, 2010, 11:32 AM

Something has to change...

I see the issue of subsidies and exclusivity as something that really needs to be made clear. People should know if they are buying an iPhone in installments and when it becomes "theirs". They should also know clearly how that is distinct from their cellular plans. All this lumping things together makes it real hard once you've fulfilled your obligation. Every other phone they'll unlock for you so if you travel overseas or want to go to another carrier it is fine. Also, they make the iPhone so that you can't even use it with AT&T prepaid. No other phone is made like that. So if you are just "renting the iphone" instead of purchasing it, then let the people know.

The apps you buy only add to that but it is not the main issue. If the phone ...

Jul 10, 2010, 10:09 AM

Another lawsuit, more money to the attorneys...

People need to get a freaking life. There are three other national carriers and there are hundreds and hundreds of other kind of cells phone (smart phones). We live in the US. Meaning we have the right to choose, so exercise that right. If you want an iPhone that bad but don't like AT&T then WAIT and stop complaining like a 2 year old. I'm not a technician, but I can tell if the iPhone was on any other carrier they would most likely have similar problems as AT&T is experiencing. AT&T needs to spend tons of money to boost their signal throughout the cities instead of spanning the area they can cover. This will solve their reception problem. I know this for a fact because I just came back from Korea and I had no problem with reception. Actuall...
I don't know about fining the attorneys, let them collect the fee's from the geniuses behind the lawsuit. But you can find the right municipality and run a campaign to vote idiot judges out of their office. THAT would make a serious point!
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