Former Apple engineer testifies that the iPod was originally designed to block all non iTunes clients

Former Apple engineer testifies that the iPod was originally designed to block all non iTunes clients
The federal antitrust suit against Apple, that featured a video deposition from the late Steve Jobs, is still underway in the U.S. District Court in Oakland, California. The plaintiffs are seeking $350 million from Apple, for not allowing certain early versions of the Apple iPod to work with other music clients besides iTunes. The plaintiffs claim that by allowing only iTunes to connect with these iPod models, it caused the device to artificially rise in price from 2006 through 2009.

On Friday, former iTunes engineer Rod Schultz took the stand. Subpoenaed by the plaintiffs, Schultz classified himself as an unwilling witness, not wanting to talk about his work on iTunes from 2006-2007. On the stand, Schultz admitted that he worked on a project designed to block non-iTunes clients from being used on the iPod. He also worked on keeping third-party devices, competitors to the iPod, away from iTunes. Apple claims that it needed to lock down the iPod to protect the device and users' experience, which could have been negatively affected by other music clients and third-party devices.

The two original plaintiffs involved in the suit have both pulled out of the trial. It turns out that both of them purchased their respective Apple iPod units outside of the Sept. 12, 2006 to March 31, 2009 time period that the suit covers.

Schultz is the last witness in the trial. Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers plans on turning the case over to the jury for deliberations early next week. Under the Antitrust laws, the jury could triple the damages to more than $1 billion.

source: WSJ



1. dimas

Posts: 3363; Member since: Jul 22, 2014

Not surprising at all. When I had iPhone 4s, it's always hard just to bluetooth files to my friends with Android devices and my mp3s purchased outside iTunes just magically disappear or not recognized by iTunes.

5. engineer-1701d unregistered

this was the reason my computer crashed every time I tried using itunes, songs from napster would not work on ipod, this is reason I hate apple and will never buy from them

2. greenelektron

Posts: 537; Member since: Sep 10, 2014

People had already accepted the fact that apple has a very closed ecosystem. Well on the year 2006, there should be really a case against apple with this issue. Because during that year, people are still used to having an open way of moving files within different devices and software products.

3. theguy2345

Posts: 1216; Member since: Jun 24, 2014

This is basically the definition of monopoly. What a terrible thing to do. The sad thing is, it is not even surprising from apple. They still make you use iTunes when syncing you ithing with a computer. Which runs like complete crap by the way. Why can't I just use file explorer to sync like I can with a WP or android? Their ecosystem is so closed tight it is air tight. This is one of the reasons an ithing is always my last choice.

4. mixedfish

Posts: 1555; Member since: Nov 17, 2013

The funniest part is we had all these whingers between 2000-2005 about Sony's music platforms with their ecosystem. Now you have people rushing in to use Apple's closed ecosystem

6. deewinc

Posts: 455; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

I remember those days we used to have trouble syncing mp3 files from other sources into our iPods. And when you manage to do so, the files could simply not be accessible on your iPod.

9. FrenchGuy

Posts: 134; Member since: Dec 12, 2014

Don't worry, it was a REVOLUTION !!!

7. Tritinum

Posts: 471; Member since: May 06, 2014


8. TheNeighbor

Posts: 370; Member since: Nov 15, 2013

I remember I was forced to pay $10 so that the bluetooth function can be used on my iPod 2nd gen.

10. toiletcleaner

Posts: 224; Member since: Oct 10, 2012

same here, and a few weeks later was free :(

11. XECPhoneStuff

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 04, 2015

Finally someone says something! Apple Inc. Is a piece of crap I will never buy from them.

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