Apple Hit with a $125 Million Class Action in Israel over Purposely Slowing iPhones
The class action lawsuits against Apple began to roll in on Friday and throughout the holiday weekend and right into Christmas day Patently Apple has been staying on top of this story (one, two, three and four) with this being the fifth story thus far. The claimants in the Israeli class action say that Apple breached its basic duties toward users by failing to disclose that 'innocent' software updates would negatively impact their phone use.
The Israeli report claims that "The two Israelis behind the suit argue that Apple breached its duty toward consumers by concealing information.
Apple claimed last week that its intention in providing software updates that slowed the phones was to make aging batteries last longer. But the lawsuits filed in the U.S. charge that the company's silence led users to wrongly conclude that their only option was to buy newer, pricier iPhones.
The Israeli class action filed in Tel Aviv on Monday says that Apple is known for its 'closed' nature: The code of its system is not accessible, and users are entirely dependent on Apple's judgment regarding their use of the operating system and the device. The claim accuses Apple of breaching its basic duties toward users by failing to disclose that 'innocent' software updates would have negative implications for their phone use.
The claimants say that the software updates impaired their ability to browse the web, check email and use various applications. "There is no doubt that information about the device slowing is important, and cardinal, and users had the right to get [that information] from Apple before deciding whether to install the software updates," the lawsuit says.
The lawsuit also alleges that although Apple says it had technical motives for releasing its slowing updates, it had a clear interest in hiding the information from users because it would prefer they replace old iPhones with new ones as soon as possible." For more on this click here.
More class action lawsuits are rolling in and I can't remember a time when so many rained down on the courts over a single Apple issue in such an explosive rate. You either have savvy lawyers knowing this could be a huge pay day for them or Apple fans are truly enraged over this issue. Apple has to hope that it's the former.
Apple's executives will have to go out of their way to calm down this mania because this has the potential of hurting their reputation across the globe as we now see that it's been extended to Israel. If no other smartphone OEM's have adopted a similar practice of strategically or purposefully slowing down their older smartphones due to aging batteries, then this could come back to haunt Apple unless their case can be heard above the angry crowds.
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