In the first such settlement in Latin America, Apple has agreed to pay consumers in Chile $3.4 million in a lawsuit over iPhone throttling, the consumers’ lawyer said Wednesday.
Apple is accused of having programmed a limited lifespan into some products to force users to replace their phones sooner than necessary, and has previously settled similar cases in the United States and Europe.
In Chile, some 150,000 users of the iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus and SE sued the US company, claiming their smartphones started underperforming after software updates programmed by Apple before December 21, 2017.
The agreement provides for a registration period for affected clients, who will have to provide proof of their devices’ reduced performance, a lawyer for the ODECU consumer body, Juan Sebastian Reyes, told a virtual press conference.
Each client stands to get maximum compensation of $50, which is to be shared if there are more than one claim per serial number, as in the case of second-hand phones.
MacDailyNews Take: Expect more repetitive lessons to occur around the world as Apple’s very and increasingly expensive lesson in customer communication continues – a lesson that could have been completely avoided with the publication of a simple support document that explained the “iPhone throttling” feature.
Apple handled this poorly and deserves to learn a lesson so that the company properly communicates with customers in the future. – MacDailyNews, August 1, 2019
There’s no excusing this one. Apple deserves the ongoing headache. Hopefully, when all is said and done and paid, the company will have learned an important lesson about transparency and communication with their customers. — MacDailyNews, February 27, 2018
You can see why some think that Apple wanted to keep what they were doing a secret. If people knew that a $79 battery replacement would give them an iPhone that performed like it did on day one, a meaningful percentage would take that option versus buying a new iPhone. Now that it’s just $29 this year, that percentage will naturally increase.
Then again, as Hanlon’s razor states: “Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.”
Apple’s made up of people. People are imperfect. We’ll take Apple’s word for it that they “always wanted… customers to be able to use their iPhones as long as possible” and that they “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.” — MacDailyNews, January 3, 2018
Again, it’s Apple’s lack of communication that is the problem here. If Apple had clearly explained what was going on in the software, we’d know to recommend a battery replacement when users complained their older iPhones were getting “slow.” As it was, we were pretty much left to assume that the processor/RAM wasn’t up to par with demands of newer iOS releases and we’d naturally recommend getting a new iPhone.
Just yesterday, we had a friend complain that his iPhone 6 was acting “slow” and we knew to recommend a battery replacement (even though he instead opted to get himself an iPhone X on our strong recommendation). — MacDailyNews, December 29, 2017
As has almost always been the case with Apple, unfortunately, transparency comes later, not sooner, and usually as a reaction to negative publicity. A simple Knowledge Base article would have preempted all of this Reddit sleuthing and the attendant handwringing and erroneous presumptions. — MacDailyNews, December 20, 2017