Apple, Inc. is facing some trouble in Canada currently. The company has been accused of fixing deals with mobile networks in Canada. Those deals may have included blocking Canadian mobile networks from reducing the price of competitor phones, which would have made the iPhone more appealing to buyers.
Apple’s Upper Hand
Since the iPhone is one of the most popular phones sold in Canada, Apple seems to have had a powerful card when it came to dealing with mobile networks. Letting mobile providers know that the company wouldn’t tolerate competition could have meant that it was a lot harder for those networks to sell other phones.
Apple is, indeed, one of the most popular phone companies in Canada, but this may not be completely because the company has the best phones. Consumers may have been pushed into buying iPhones when comparing the prices of other phones that appeared much higher. If Apple did, indeed, strike this kind of a deal with mobile networks in Canada, the company will have pay compensation fees.
A Swift Deadline
Canada’s Competition Bureau has told Apple that the company has ninety days to hand over the documents between the iPhone manufacturer and Canadian mobile networks. Once those documents have been handed in, the bureau will scan the documents for any kind of misleading or illegal activity.
Apple has declined to comment on the accusations at the time of this writing. It is likely that Apple will appeal the paperwork demand, and that the company will not hand over any kind of paperwork. Where this will leave Apple in Canada, though, remains to be seen.
Apple has also been in the news this week for accusations that the company did not allow competitor music to be played and stored on iPods. Apple argued in defence of this tactic stating that removing competitor music was a matter of security, and that the measures taken were necessary to protect iTunes users.
Some Shady Business
Being one of the companies with the most negotiating power when it comes to cellphones and other popular devices, Apple has a lot of negotiation power. This is a good thing for apple, but it’s not such a good thing for consumers that should be given a fair deal when it comes to buying items like cell phones. When consumers see that an iPhone is a greater or equal deal to another phone, most will purchase the iPhone.
As Apple stands accused of fixing prices in some Canadian stores, competitor manufacturers may not have received a fair shake, and that, in turn, means that consumers may not have received the same phone prices in Canada as in the rest of North America. So far, no mobile networks have commented on the accusations, and Apple remains quiet. Apple is expected to appeal the decision, and that’s likely the company’s next move. Either way, this news doesn’t leave Canadian buyers too confident in either mobile carriers or in Apple.
I’ll keep you posted on any updates to this story, so make sure to check back.