Delight but also cross. The stores that Apple has spread throughout the United States bring profits to Cupertino but also numerous disagreements with traditional retailers and now, it seems, even some lawsuits.
According to reports from the San Francisco Chronicle, in fact, some authorized dealers in the Bay Area have decided to bring Cupertino to court. The very heavy charges are fraud, contractual defaults, unfair competition, misleading advertising and even the violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, the treaty that punishes organized criminal activity.
At the origin of the complaint to the Californian judiciary, precisely, the methods by which, according to some retailers, Apple is managing the spread of its stores.
"They have been making fun of us for years – says Tom Santos, owner of Macadam, one of the most important American Mac products stores and authorized dealer who has sold 6 million dollars last year – making us pass for dishonest people and people looking to defraud customers "
Over the past few months, Apple would have delivered a number of competitive advantages not available to traditional retailers to its stores, including new models in advance, discounts, promotions, and a whole host of benefits that incentivize customers. In addition to this, again according to Santos, Apple store managers criticize the competence of independent retailers by negatively influencing customers.
But not only the shop policy that makes Santos mad. The Macadam owner also lists incorrect billing on defective parts shipped to the home and unfair and harassing limits on warranty repairs. "If we return defective machines above a value of 1% of the turnover in the fourth quarter – Santos says – they oblige us to repair the machines at our expense and to sell them as reconditioned machines". And this would also happen on the "DOA" Dead On Arrival machines, which are already inoperative when they arrive at the dealers' warehouses.
There would also be limits on the parts that can be obtained free of charge (one only for repair even if the defective part also caused damage to other components or perhaps the replaced component was defective in turn).
Macadam would not be the only Apple store intending to sue the Apple house. Tech Systems from Ben (Oregon) and Computer International (from Los Angeles) have already lined up with independent causes alongside the large retailer. Apple is also going to sue Apple Elite Computers & Software, which, ironically, is located right in front of the Cupertino headquarters and which operates under the name ComputerWare.
Santos' attorney estimates that Apple's damage to his client can amount to $ 12 million, although as the plaintiff himself says, "this is not a question of money at all. The only thing I want things to be fixed once and for all. "