Apple has just been slapped with a fine amounting to NT$20 million (about US$670,000) over its interference with the iPhone’s pricing in Taiwan, reports The Wall Street Journal.
The fine was exacted by Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission:
It found the Cupertino-based company violated article 18 of Taiwan’s Fair Trade Act by telling Taiwan’s three main service providers how much to sell iPhones for. Apple also asked Chunghwa Telecom Co., Far Eastone Telecommunication Co. and Taiwan Mobile Co. to adjust rates.
According to the commission, it’s not in Apple’s authority to interfere with the iPhone pricing plans of carriers after they secure the distribution rights. Apparently, the commission confirmed Apple’s involvement in the pricing of the iPhone through the email correspondence between Apple and the three carriers.
Apple may opt to appeal the commission’s ruling, but at the risk of having its fine increased to NT$50 million (roughly US$1.7 million) in case of noncompliance.
The ruling applies to the iPhone only, and there are no plans to probe into Apple’s possible interference with the pricing of the iPad in Taiwan.