Apple pays $ 113 million to settle an investigation by 34 states and the District of Columbia into the company’s practice of slowing down old iPhones when their batteries degrade. Apple did not announce this practice but rather. This led to regulators and customers alike criticizing the company for not responding, particularly when asked about it in the past.
“The big tech companies should stop manipulating consumers and telling them the whole truth about their practices and products,” said Arizona Attorney General Mark Bernovich, who helped lead the investigation. He said in a statement. “I am obligated to hold these tech giants accountable if they hide the truth from their users.” Apple will pay Arizona $ 5 million, with the rest divided among other states. Washington Post I mentioned the news earlier.
In court filings, Apple said it agreed to the settlement to resolve the investigation, but added that “nothing contained in this document can be considered or interpreted as an admission or waiver of any violation of law, rule, regulations, or any other matter of fact or Law, or any liability or infringement, is expressly denied by Apple. ”
The company said in the filings: “No part of this ruling, including its statements and obligations, will constitute evidence of any liability, error or breach by Apple.”
The news is the latest example of how big technology is coming under increased scrutiny by regulators and lawmakers. Although the “Batterygate” saga, as it is known, took place before the major tech scandalsData privacy scandal and political elections, the event marked a turning point for the iPhone maker.
For years, AppleBut the conspiracy theory persisted, arguing that the tech giant was making phones less usable to get people to upgrade – a practice that’s been referred to as outdated. When Apple admitted that it had slowed down iPhones – albeit for a different reason, she said – the news caught attention from around the world.
“Our goal is to provide the best customer experience, which includes the overall performance and extended life of their devices,” Apple said in a preliminary statement on December 20, 2017.. He explained that when old batteries cannot provide enough power when phones try to perform more complex tasks, such as playing a video game, they slow down the phone’s chips to the level that the battery can perform.
Critics wrongly criticized it, and a little over a week later, Apple formally apologized while insisting it had acted in the best interest of customers. It also offered a $ 29 limited-time battery replacement for anyone who requested it, rather than the typical $ 79 charge. It has added features to its iOS software that better explain how iPhone batteries work and give people a choice.
“We have never done – and never will – anything to intentionally shorten the life of any Apple product, or reduce user experience to drive customer upgrades. Our goal has always been to create products our customers love, and to make iPhones last as long as possible is an important part of that, “Camel. “We know some of you feel that Apple has let you down. We apologize.”
However, lawsuits and investigations followed. In March this year, AppleFor a class action lawsuit settlement, the company agreed to pay customers $ 25 per iPhone, with a minimum payment of $ 310 million. It has covered current and former iPhone owners in the US who have an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus, or SE running iOS 12.2.1 or later. It also covered iPhone 7 and 7 Plus running iOS 11.2 or later before December 21, 2017.
At the time, Joseph Cauchet, co-principal advisor to the plaintiffs, said in a statement that “the settlement provides significant relief to Apple consumers, and will help move forward in ensuring that customers are fully informed when they are asked to update their products.” Apple has denied wrongdoing.