Four additional states join Justice Department antitrust case against Apple

Four more states have joined the Justice Department’s antitrust lawsuit against Apple, bringing the total to 19 states and the District of Columbia.

In late March, the Justice Department filed an antitrust lawsuit against Apple, accusing the company of “monopolizing smartphone markets,” resulting in higher prices for customers. By this time, 15 states and the District of Columbia had joined the Justice Department. With the addition of additional states, the list now includes:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • Indiana
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Nevada
  • North Dakota
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin

“We welcome the states of Indiana, Massachusetts, Nevada and Washington to join our existing coalition to restore competition in smartphone markets monopolized by Apple,” said Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Kanter of the Justice Department’s antitrust division. “We look forward to resolving this important case with our state partners to ensure the benefits of competition for consumers, app developers, accessory makers and the American public.”

In late May, Apple filed a petition asking for the case to be dismissed, arguing that its smartphone business did not meet the definition of a monopoly. It’s hard to disagree with the company’s position. Despite controlling 60.77% of the US smartphone market, the company has just 28.58% globally – not enough to constitute a monopoly.

Others agree with Apple, saying the Justice Department case is a classic case of stalling. Don’t Break What Works sent a statement to WPN criticizing the Department of Justice when it originally filed the lawsuit.

“The Department of Justice, like the Federal Trade Commission, is strangely committed to bringing cases that seek to undermine some of America’s most innovative companies – harming the powerful engines of our economy, job creators, and providers of the products and services people love. Currently, the latest target is Apple, despite a multi-year investigation that currently yields little evidence of wrongdoing,” said Chandler Smith Costello, spokeswoman for the Don’t Break What Works campaign.

“If successful, this lawsuit will reduce the privacy and security of Apple products and make it more difficult for them to work together seamlessly. It is difficult to imagine how this enforcement action will benefit consumers,” she continued.