Apple is no stranger to legal action, and now in Portugal a consumer rights group have threatened legal action against Apple because of the way their AppleCare warranty is worded. Then a few days after that, Taboada & Barros (an IT distributor and reseller) is actually suing for EUR 40m for damages over price-fixing claims along with unfair trade practices.
Apple sued for shady Apple care wording
The latter was reported in iPhoneTuga, an Apple blog in Portugal, which describes details about the lawsuit that began in February 2012 and has only just been made public because of the DECO action mentioned. The DECO case has precedent in Italy, where Apple had to pay USD 1.2 million for a similar violation. However the Taboada & Barros case does not have precedent. They are alleging that the restrictions Apple have placed on product distribution quantity to third parties meant that Interlog, an Apple distributer controled by Taboada & Barros, failed. They said this happened at a time when Apple were also becoming more active in Portugal. They have a website specifically for Portugal though resellers are the only option for actual physical sales. Economico stated in May 2011 that resellers do not have enough devices to match demand and this has been a problem, and may be down the the Interlog failure, which in turn was down to Apple putting limits on distribution.
In addition to this, a source from TB have also stated that Apple have changed margins that resellers can take when selling devices down to 4% from a previous 12%. This is probably why the damages claimed for are EUR 40 million.
We can believe how this would all be the case, since Apple have such a huge physical and online presence in most countries so it does not come as a surprise that Apple are pushing sellers in Portugal harder to get more sales. However it seems as though Apple will see a big dent in their reputation in Portugal after this action and also the DECO action.