Apple has begun sending out credits in the form of iTunes cards to customers affected by the e-book price fixing lawsuit involving Apple, Amazon, Hachette, Harper Collins, Penguin, Macmillan, and Simon & Schuster.
This week, Apple customers began receiving an email from the Cupertino company informing them that they are entitled to a reimbursement for their spending on e-books purchased from the iBooks Store.
Amazon was actually the first to issue such credits, and now Apple is following in the footsteps of the online retailer with its own iTunes credits that can be used towards the purchase of other books from the iTunes Store.
The letter sent to iTunes users says, “Dear Apple Customer, You previously received an email informing you that you were eligible for a credit in your Apple iTunes account.”
“The credit results from the Settlements reached with publishers Hachette, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin in antitrust lawsuits filed by State Attorneys General and Class Plaintiffs about the price of electronic books (‘E-books’).”
The iPhone maker claims it is “not a party in these settlements,” and it is known to have appealed the decision by which the aforementioned e-book sellers, including Apple, have to reimburse customers.
The letter continues with Apple telling customers, “We are happy to inform you that the Court in charge of these cases has approved the Settlements, and an account credit is ready for you to activate.”
To obtain the credits, customers simply need to redeem a code (just like they do with regular gift cards) using the iTunes application on their computers.
“You can activate your account credit in the same way that you redeem an iTunes Gift Card. To activate your credit now click on the link provided below [offered at the end of the letter] and enter your iTunes store credit activation code,” reads the message.
Apple then proceeds to inform customers as to what they can do with the credit. Not surprisingly, the iTunes Gift Cards – worth only a few dollars in most cases – can only be used towards the purchase of other e-books, not apps, songs, or other types of media.
The company also offers instructions on how to redeem the credit on iPhone, iPad, or iPod at this URL: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1574.
The credit is available for activation for one year, meaning it will expire on April Fool’s day in 2015. If 90 days have passed and you still haven’t redeemed your money, Apple also promises to remind you via email.