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The Supreme Court has agreed to hear arguments on an antitrust case alleging that Apple created a monopoly with its App Store, which makes Apple the exclusive distributor of apps for the iPhone and takes a cut of app sale prices.

Bottom line: If Apple is found guilty of engaging in monopolistic behavior in what it charges developers to carry their apps in its App Store, Apple could be forced to pay out hundreds of millions of dollars to consumers purchasing the apps.

At issue: Apple charges developers a $99 annual fee to register their apps with the App store, in addition to a 30% commission on every app sale. A group of consumers that filed the original suit in 2011 claims those fees end up increasing app prices for consumers. A lower court found the developers did not have the legal standing to bring the class action lawsuit, but a judge later overturned that decision.

The bigger picture: Any case over claims that a U.S. tech giant is engaged in monopolistic behavior is bound to get a lot of attention these days. And the suit takes aim at the concept of "walled garden" ecosystems, has could impact just about every large tech company in some way.

Go deeper:

  • Supreme Court will hear Apple's appeal about iPhone App Store antitrust suit (AppleInsider)
  • The Supreme Court will hear an iOS App Store antitrust lawsuit (The Verge)
  • Apple Gets U.S. Supreme Court Review on iPhone App Fee Suit (Bloomberg)

Go deeper

Biden blindsides Europe with new AUKUS alliance on China

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Biden is constructing and deepening new alliances to strengthen the U.S. position in its showdown with China, but he risks alienating longstanding allies in the process.

Why it matters: Biden heralded a new agreement to help Australia acquire nuclear submarines as part of a trilateral security pact with the U.K. and the U.S. as an "historic step" to update U.S. alliances to face new challenges. The message from French foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, was quite different.

Trump voices support for Saturday's pro-Capitol riots rally

Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Thursday expressed solidarity with people facing prosecution in connection to the Capitol insurrection.

Why it matters: The statement was issued ahead of Saturday's rally to protest the treatment of Capitol rioters. Over 600 known federal defendants face charges related to the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Clinton-linked lawyer indicted in investigation of FBI's Russia probe

Photo: Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images

A grand jury has returned an indictment against Michael Sussmann, a lawyer whose firm represented the 2016 Clinton campaign, for lying to the FBI about not representing "any client" when he presented them with allegations about a secret Trump Organization back-channel to a Russian bank.

Why it matters: It's the second criminal charge stemming from special counsel John Durham's review of possible misconduct by the intelligence community and prosecutors who investigated the 2016 Trump campaign's ties to Russia.

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