Apple lawsuit

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) must appear in a mobile tracking lawsuit according to a ruling made by the judge in the case. Several of the other defendants, including Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), had their cases dismissed according to the article from Reuters.

The ruling, made by Us district Judge Lucy Coh in San Jose California made the ruling yesterday. The ruling means that users of Apple’s iPhone can follow on in their litigation against the company under two California consumer protection laws that would hit Apple for forcing users to overpay for their services.

Apple managed to dodge the privacy violation charges by pointing to its user agreements, which it says gives it permission to gather such data from consumers. That reasoning managed to get the complaints thrown out but the judge admitted there was some ambiguity about the permission given on collecting the information.

The litigation is based upon free applications, from the likes of Google, that tracked users movements without their permission. The judge threw out complaints that suggested Apple violated the privacy of the users but allowed the continuation of litigation that saw return from the overpayment of data charges through the location information.

Allegations against all of the app makers were thrown out by the judge who ruled that under the overpayment laws they were not liable. Apple might be, however, liable to the users for their overpayment of mobile fees. The entire lawsuit was dismissed in September of last year but the plaintiff’s were given permission by the judge to bring the case again.

In a separate lawsuit Apple failed to get the date of the Samsung Galaxy III pushed back. The firm was claiming that the device infringed on some patents held in Cupertino. The judge in that case found that hearing the case, on top of the many other Apple suits she was dealing with, would not fit into her schedule and so refused to hear the argument.

The judge in that case was the same Lucy Koh who has been dealing with a wide range of Apple related lawsuits for some time now. The Cupertino firm is involved in a tangled web of litigation relating to patent infringement and user complaints relating to its mobile platform.

Most of these cases seem ready to drag out for a long time but Apple may decide to settle some of those ongoing suits. That would certainly reduce the Judge’s workload.