AT&T is to sue a number of leading LCD manufacturers over the extra costs it incurred for the screens used on 300 million handsets.
The case came about after several manufacturers pleaded guilty in a price-fixing case brought by the US government.
The AT&T action, filed today in a San Francisco court, alleges that LG, Samsung, Chunghua, AU Optronics and others "formed an international cartel illegally to restrict competition" to raise the price of LCD products from 1 January 1996 to 11 December 2006.
AT&T said that it had suffered damage because it could not pass on the increased costs it incurred to consumers, since the handsets were sold at a subsidy anyway.
The news is bad for LCD manufacturers caught up in the price-fixing scandal. If AT&T's suit is successful, other areas of the computer industry may take similar action and companies and consumers could launch a class-action suit.
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