NJ and Neighboring States Join DOJ Lawsuit Against Apple

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The attorneys general of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut are joining the Department of Justice (DOJ) in a lawsuit against tech giant Apple. The lawsuit alleges that Apple has been blocking competitors and delaying improvements for millions of customers.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, along with the tri-state attorneys general, claims that Apple's actions have forced consumers to pay for lesser quality products. This is because Apple has managed to dominate several markets, including smartphones, apps, payment systems, and smart watches.

New Jersey Attorney General Matthew Platkin echoed these sentiments, stating that consumers are being forced to pay for lesser quality products due to Apple's infiltration of several markets.

The lawsuit alleges that Apple has violated the Sherman Antitrust Act by using its app development rules, iPhone features, and hardware to thwart competition and expand its business by charging higher prices. The DOJ claims that Apple has maintained monopoly power in the smartphone market not just by staying ahead of the competition on merit, but by violating federal antitrust law.

The lawsuit also accuses Apple of diminishing the functionality of non-Apple smartwatches, limiting access to contactless payment for third-party digital wallets, and refusing to allow its iMessage app to exchange encrypted messaging with competing platforms.

In response to the lawsuit, Apple has defended its actions, stating that the lawsuit is "wrong on the facts and the law." The company argues that if the lawsuit is successful, it would hinder their ability to create the kind of technology people expect from Apple and would set a dangerous precedent, empowering the government to take a heavy hand in designing people's technology.

This lawsuit is the latest example of aggressive antitrust law enforcement by the DOJ, which has also taken on Amazon, Google, and other tech giants with the aim of making the digital universe more fair, innovative, and competitive.

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