Apple Could Owe $500 Million After Being Found Guilty in E-Book Antitrust Case
After being found guilty in federal court of conspiring to artificially inflate e-book prices, legal experts are estimating that Apple could owe as much as $500 million in damages.
GigaOm has shared a chart provided to the federal judge in the case by the Texas attorney general. It shows how much in damages the five publishers have been found liable and how much they have paid in settlements. The remainder -- after damages have been trebled for willful violations -- works out to roughly $500 million.
The chart shows that the publishers have paid out over $166 million so far. Earlier this month, a lawyer from Hagens Berman — the class action firm in the case — told my colleague Jeff Roberts that Apple would likely face a liability payment of harm to consumers times three, minus the $166 million already paid out by publishers. On Wednesday, Law360 reported (paywall) the same thing, calculating that if Apple loses its appeal it would face about $490 million in damages. I annotated the chart above with those figures.
Apple has indicated that it will appeal the guilty ruling and it's likely that it will be many months or even years before the case is resolved.