DoJ to expand Apple anti-trust probe

Despite efforts from the  Apple friendly trade press  to play down the Department of Justice probe into Jobs’ Mob’s  iTunes operations, it is starting to look as if an anti-trust case is almost certain to happen.

Early reports suggested that the DoJ had found “nothing wrong” with what Apple had done, but now the New York Post has found out that the Justice Department’s probe of Apple is set to expand.

The DoJ has contacted a handful of the country’s biggest media and technology companies to get their views on Apple.

For years Apple has cast itself as the little creative company, but more recently it has been dictating terms to industry. The demand that big media abandon Adobe might have been a push too far.

A Hollywood source told the Post that the DoJ is doing outreach. “You can’t dictate terms to the industry. The Adobe thing is just inviting the wrath of everybody.”

Other lines of inquiry focus on a dispute with Amazon and its ability to secure exclusive release deals with the labels.

The DoJ is also asking questions about the terms that Apple lays out for computer programmers who want to develop apps for the iPad.

If the inquiries turn into actual charges it is the sort of problem that Apple does not really want at the moment.

Several media giants are turning their backs on retooling their content to make them iPad friendly, favouring instead to use technology that gives the content as wide an exposure as possible.