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Apple hit with fifth class action lawsuit for slowing down older iPhones

Apple confirms limiting peak performance on old iPhone and has now been hit with fifth class action lawsuit.

  • Published: December 26, 2017 10:36 AM IST
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Apple has been hit with a fifth class action lawsuit over its recent admission that the company slowed older models due to ageing battery. The fifth class action lawsuit was filed by Nicole Gallman at the Northern District Court of California on Friday.

Apple confirmed last week that the features rolled out as part of battery management slows older models in order to preserve battery life. The Cupertino-based iPhone maker added that it does not deliberately slow down iPhone as they got older, but does so only to ensure that older models last a bit longer than usual. The confirmation came after Primate Jabs’ John Poole revealed how CPU performance of older iPhone varied compared to newer models with benchmark results.

“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 said in a statement.

The class action lawsuit argues that Apple has violated trust of its loyal customers by not informing consumers that the performance issues were artificially introduced via iOS update. “This is a consumer protection action seeking injunctive relief and damages arising from Defendant’s unlawful failure to inform consumers that updating their iPhone 6, 6S, SE or 7 (the “Legacy Devices”) to iOS 10.2.1 (and/or later to iOS 11.2) would dramatically and artificially reduce the performance of the Legacy Devices,” the complaint reads.

Apple also failed to inform consumers that the performance of their older iPhone can be restored by as much as 70 percent by replacing the old battery. The company charges $79 for battery replacement, while a new iPhone starts at $649. The lawsuits further argue that Apple willingly restricted peak performance on their older iPhone in order to force iPhone owners to upgrade to a newer model.

The lawsuit highlights that Apple purposefully reduces performance and failed to inform its consumers. The company is not being criticized for its action but mainly for not offering material information regarding its move in advance to users.

PatentlyApple further reports that Apple failed to disclose its intention when it rolled out iOS 10.2.1 update. The update claimed to offer bug fixes and improve security of the phone but did not reveal details of the new power management feature.

It is widely known that lithium-ion batteries powering most electronic devices tend to hold less charge over a period of time. However, their inability to hold as much charge as it did when it was has got nothing to do with performance. Apple says a battery incapable of holding full charge will end up depleting completely when the iPhone demands peak performance. However, the lack of transparency from the company has irked a lot of its consumers.

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  • Published Date: December 26, 2017 10:36 AM IST