The issue of intentionally slowing down of its iPhones without getting consent from the use, which Apple acknowledged very recently, has landed the company in lawsuits.
In conditions when the batteries get older, cold or have a low charge that results in abrupt shutdowns, in iPhone 6, 6S, 7 and SE, there is slowdown of speed of the iPhones, Apple has admitted.
Alleging that no consent from users was sought by Apple before slowing down their iPhones, a couple of law suits were filed against the IT giant by plaintiffs in California and Illinois.
Apple’s iOS updates were “fraudulently forcing iPhone owners to purchase the latest model offered by Apple”, claimed two people from Chicago and residents of Ohio, Indiana and North Carolina.
“Apple purposefully and knowingly released operating system software updates to iPhone 5, iPhone 6 and certain iPhone 7 phones that slowed the performance speeds of the central processing units (‘CPUs’) of these devices,” said the plaintiffs in a legal filing in the Northern District of the State of Illinois. “Apple’s software updates purposefully slowed or ‘throttled down’ the performance speeds of iPhone 5, iPhone 6, certain iPhone 7 phones and as yet unknown versions of iPhones because operating system software updates wreaked havoc on batteries within these model devices.”
“Corporations have to realise that people are sophisticated and that when people spend their hard-earned dollars on a product they expect it to perform as expected,” James Vlahakis attorney for the plaintiffs told the Chicago Sun Times.
“Instead, Apple appears to have obscured and concealed why older phones were slowing down.”
The two California plaintiffs claimed in their lawsuits that Apple’s deliberate actions resulted in them suffering “economic damages and other harm for which they are entitled to compensation” and as such they demanded compensations via the US District Court for the Central District of California. The plaintiffs are Stefan Bogdanovich and Dakota Speas.
Bogdanovich and Speas claim that they “were never given the option to bargain or choose whether they preferred to have their iPhones slower than normal” and that they “suffered interferences to their iPhone usage due to the intentional slowdowns”.
The loss that they incurred due to deprivation of the value of their iPhones, the buying of new batteries, loss of use and value and replacement of an old phone were the basis of on which the plaintiffs believe that they should be compensated.
Because Apple “purposefully interfered in order to slow down its performance”, the plaintiffs “did not receive what they paid for and hence the plaintiffs should also be paid compensation for the “overpayments” that they had made to Apple for such iPhones.
After users raised their voices on multiple online platforms on the issue, an investigation was conducted by benchmarking firm Primate Labs. The firm conducted an analysis of performance data and the results clearly indicated that there had been artificial slowing down of the older iPhone’s performance. Apple acknowledged the matter soon after results of the investigations were published.
(Adapted from The Guardian)