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Did Apple intentionally slow down iPhones?

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Apple has initiated payments in a long-standing class action lawsuit related to allegations of intentionally slowing down certain iPhones. This move comes as a $500M settlement, with complainants set to receive a portion of fund, to approximately $92 per claim.

Apple’s Settlement and Denial of Wrongdoing

The tech giant agreed to settle the lawsuit back in 2020, vehemently denying any wrongdoing. The decision to settle was primarily driven by Apple’s concern over the escalating costs associated with prolonged litigation. Despite the denial, the company chose the settlement route to put an end to the legal dispute.

Apple Iphone
Apple

The Genesis of the Lawsuit

The roots of the US case trace back to December 2017 when Apple, much to the dismay of iPhone owners. The admission that certain iPhones were intentionally slowed down as they aged due to battery performance raised considerable public outcry.

Accusations and Fallout

However, the controversy arose when Apple was accused of deliberately throttling the performance of specific iPhones without informing its customers. Compelling Apple to respond by offering discounted battery replacements as a remedy to the problem. The discontent among users resulted in the initiation of the US legal action.

Unexpected Payouts

Initially estimated at a mere $25 per person, the actual payout has proven to be nearly four times that amount, surprising many claimants. This unexpected turn of events has prompted further discussion and speculation about the intricacies of the settlement.

Parallel Legal Battle in the UK

Simultaneously, a similar legal battle is unfolding in the United Kingdom, where a mass action lawsuit seeking £1.6 billion in compensation is underway. The case, initiated by Justin Gutmann in June 2022, represents an estimated 24 million iPhone users. Apple’s attempt to block the lawsuit in the UK was unsuccessful in November of the previous year.

Apple’s Defense and Mr. Gutmann’s Perspective

Apple, consistently asserting the baselessness of the lawsuit, has adamantly stated that it would never intentionally shorten the life of its products or compromise the user experience for the sake of driving upgrades. Justin Gutmann, the claimant in the UK case, expressed satisfaction with the US payments but emphasized that it doesn’t impact the proceedings in the UK.

The Ongoing Battle in the UK

Despite the positive developments in the US, Mr. Gutmann notes that Apple is vigorously opposing the UK class action. While predicting the timeline remains challenging, Mr. Gutmann hopes for a trial in late 2024 or early 2025.

Conclusion

The Apple class action lawsuit saga continues to unfold, with significant developments both in the US and the UK. The unexpected payouts in the US bring a sense of vindication for some, while the UK legal battle persists with Apple staunchly defending its position. As the legal landscape evolves, it remains to be seen how these cases will shape the future of consumer rights and corporate accountability in the tech industry.

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