Timothy Smith has filed suit against Apple, alleging that the company has violated antitrust law with the iPhone. The Cartwright Act is what’s at question here — a California law that Smith’s attorney says Apple has broken because it prohibits iPhone users from using a cell phone service other than AT&T.
The suit is asking the court for an injunction against Apple to keep the company from selling the iPhone with any sort of software lock restricting its use only to AT&T’s wireless network. The suit is also asking to keep Apple from denying warranty coverage to iPhone users who have unlocked their devices.
Saratoga, Calif.-based Damian Fernandez, the lawyer representing Smith, has filed the case as a class action lawsuit, and expects other California residents to join Smith in his action against Apple. The papers filed in court last week indicate that Fernandez isn’t yet sure how large the class will be, other than to say that there are estimated to be more than one and a quarter million iPhone owners out there, with several hundred thousand of them having unlocked devices.
The antitrust lawsuit is the latest legal challenge to Apple over the iPhone. Earlier this month a New York woman
against Apple for its $200 iPhone price cut, claiming price discrimination, unfair and deceptive practices, and underselling. Over the summer Apple was
over the iPhone’s lack of an easily user-replaceable battery.