An appeals court has ruled that Apple must face antitrust charges in a lawsuit that alleges that the company monopolized the market for iPhone apps.

The U.S. Court for Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed Thursday a decision by a lower court and ruled that the app buyers filing the lawsuit are direct purchasers of iPhone apps from Apple, rather than from app developers, and hence have standing to sue. Apple was a distributor of iPhone apps, selling them directly to buyers through its App Store, according to the court.

The proposed class-action lawsuit started in 2011 with the complaint changing several times.

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