The United States Department of Justice is suing Apple and Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Simon and Schuster and Penguin of colluding over the prices of e-books they sell. Reports said Hachette, HarperCollins and Simon and Schuster have already settled. The case will however proceed against Apple, Macmillan and Penguin “for conspiring to end e-book retailers’ freedom to compete on price,” according to the Justice Department. This lawsuit was filed on the basis of the firms’ adoption of an “agency model” where publishers rather than sellers set prices. Apple, which sells books through its iBooks platform on the iPad and iPhone, declined to comment.
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