Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
Verdict: A U.S. District Court has found Apple (AAPL) guilty of colluding with five publishing companies to fix prices for e-books sold through its iBookstore, Reuters reports. Judge Denise Cote handed the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) a major victory, dismissing Apple’s defense. In a 159-page decision issued on Wednesday, the judge said that Apple orchestrated the conspiracy to raise e-book prices as it challenged Amazon‘s (AMZN) near monopoly over the e-book market. 33 states and U.S. territories had joined the DOJ’s suit against the iPad-maker. All five of publishers named in the original suit negotiated settlements with the government prior to the trial, paying damages totaling $166 million. The judge will schedule a new trial to assess potential damages against Apple, which could be substantial. Apple issued a statement maintaining its innocence and saying it would appeal the verdict. In 2012, Apple negotiated a settlement with European regulators over similar e-book price-fixing allegations. Apple is also facing class action lawsuits from consumers over e-book prices. The judge’s decision will certainly bolster those actions.
Display Shift: A Korean media report indicates that Apple will increase the use of IGZO (indium gallium zinc oxide) screens in its iPads and MacBooks, CNET notes. The company has been in talks with Sharp and LG Display (LPL) to increase production of IGZO screens. IGZO displays have higher pixel density and transmit more light through their backs, compared to traditional LCDs, meaning that they require less LED backlighting. That reduces their energy consumption relative to traditional LCDs, meaning that iPads and MacBooks that feature IGZO screens could have even longer battery life.
App Birthday: Today marks the fifth anniversary of the App Store’s debut, USA TODAY notes. When the App Store launched, just a year after the iPhone was unveiled, it offered just 500 apps. Today, users can select from more than 900,000 apps for iPads and iPhones on the digital store. The initial batch of apps include entries from Facebook (FB), eBay (EBAY) and the popular game Super Monkey Ball. Since its launch in 2008, more than 50 billion apps have been downloaded through the App Store, which drove the success of apps like Instagram, which was ultimately purchased by Google (GOOG) for $1 billion. Apple gets a 30% cut of revenue from apps downloaded through the App Store. Developers have received about $10 billion in payments from the App Store over the past five years. Apple CEO Tim Cook recently commented that the App Store “fundamentally changed the world.”
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.