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Apple Begins Payouts over Multi-Million Dollar Lawsuit for Slowing Down iPhones

Tech giant Apple has reportedly started making payouts in a class action lawsuit addressing allegations of intentionally slowing down older iPhones.

BBC News reports that in 2017, Apple admitted to intentionally slowing down certain iPhone models as they aged, citing concerns over aging batteries that could affect device performance and longevity.

This sparked public outrage and legal challenges, which led to a settlement in 2020. Despite denying any wrongdoing, Apple agreed to pay a substantial sum from a $500 million fund to claimants, averaging around $92 per claim.

Breitbart News reported on the case at the time, writing:

“Our goal is to deliver the best experience for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices,” the company declared, explaining, “Lithium-ion batteries become less capable of supplying peak current demands when in cold conditions, have a low battery charge or as they age over time, which can result in the device unexpectedly shutting down to protect its electronic components.”

“Last year we released a feature for iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and iPhone SE to smooth out the instantaneous peaks only when needed to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down during these conditions,” Apple continued. “We’ve now extended that feature to iPhone 7 with iOS 11.2, and plan to add support for other products in the future.”

Some users on Twitter, however, alleged Apple were slowing down older devices in an effort to force customers to upgrade.

Now, a similar lawsuit is currently underway in the UK, with approximately 24 million iPhone users seeking £1.6 billion in compensation. T

he lawsuit, initiated by Justin Gutmann in June 2022, alleges that Apple intentionally shortened the lifespan of its products and degraded user experience to encourage upgrades.

Apple has strongly denied these allegations, calling them “baseless,” and adding “we have never – and would never – do anything to intentionally shorten the life of any Apple product, or degrade the user experience to drive customer upgrades.”

Gutmann stated that while he is happy to hear payouts have begun in the U.S. case, it has no effect on his case in the UK: “It doesn’t advance our position here, they haven’t admitted anything – they’ve settled… It’s a moral victory but not much use to me. I’ve got to plough on and pursue the case in the UK jurisdiction.”

 

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