Five-Year Plan: Challenging the Apple/AT&T Exclusivity Deal

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Just how long AT&T has exclusive rights to the iPhone has long been a bone of contention, especially in the wake of reports that the Death Star had re-upped with the House of Jobs in exchange for offering no-contract 3G service for the iPad.

Turns out there's a class-action lawsuit brewing in California since 2007, claiming that AT&T and Apple actually formed an iPhone monopoly: they promised their marriage would only last two years — when in fact, they intended it to run a full five years (until 2012, or around the time Marvel finally puts out their AVENGERS movie…).  Apple, for its part, retorted "Hey, we said all along it'd be five years — and we NEVER said anything about unlocking your iPhones after the initial two year contract was up!"

So the question remains: is the original five-year contract still in effect?

And equally importantly: the suit also alleges monopolistic practices by Apple for barring third-party apps from OS 1.0 — and the judge said "yeah, I'll accept that."  A point of law that both Adobe and the FTC should be taking a great deal of interest in…

[Via Engadget]

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