Testimony continued on Friday in the ongoing class action lawsuit against Apple, as former iTunes engineer Rod Schultz testified that he worked to block non-iTunes clients, in order to block third-party music providers from competing with Apple’s iPod.
A former iTunes engineer testified in a federal antitrust case against Apple Friday that he worked on a project “intended to block 100% of non-iTunes clients” and “keep out third-party players” that competed with Apple’s iPod.
Schultz, who was subpoenaed by the plaintiffs, told the court that his project was codenamed “Candy” and that he didn’t want to talk about his work on iTunes from 2006 to 2007. He went on to suggest Apple’s security measures used in iTunes reflected the digital music industry at the time. Record companies demanded the DRM, and forced Apple to keep the iPod secure.
While both Schultz and Apple argued that Apple’s efforts were designed to protect its systems – and by extension the user experience – which may have been compromised by third-party players and file formats, Schultz did admit that this also led to the iPod’s dominance.
Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers plans on sending the case to the jury this week. Plaintiffs are seeking $350 million in damages, an amount that could be tripled under antitrust laws.