Users of old iPhones in the United States can now claim money back from Apple, as a result of its lawsuit settlement for slowdowns
Apple users in the US who were impacted by the firm’s deliberately policy of slowing down older iPhone models, can now claim their compensation.
Apple ran into trouble in December 2017, when it was discovered that the iPad maker had deliberately slowed down older iPhones, which it claimed would help avoid unexpected handset shutdowns.
The issue was discovered when an iPhone user shared performance tests on Reddit that revealed that a iPhone 6S had slowed down considerably as it had aged.
However the handset suddenly sped up again after the battery was replaced, pointing to a deliberate policy by Apple to slow older iPhones.
In the ensuing outrage, Apple was forced to say sorry over the matter and lowered the price for replacement batteries to $29 from $79, but it denied accusations at the time that it was a clumsy attempt to force customers to upgrade to new handsets.
Apple’s official position on the matter remains that lithium-ion batteries become less capable of supplying and maintaining peak current demands, as they age.
Apple insisted its slowdown (or throttling) was designed to stop older iPhones unexpectedly shutting down, so as to protect its electronic components.
But just one week after Apple’s admission in December 2017 that it slowed down older iPhones, three class-action lawsuits were launched in the US against the iPad maker.
Plaintiffs argued they didn’t consent to the company’s “interference”, and the lawsuits were eventually combined into a single case against the tech giant.
How to claim
In March 2019 Apple settled the lawsuit with a $500 million litigation settlement in the United States.
This means that iPhone users in the US who have handsets affected by the issue, can claim $25 (£20) for each affected handset. US owners of iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus, and SE devices are all entitled to the $25 payment.
Users can submit their claim(s) here.
However, it should be noted that there some restrictions to the payouts.
Users have to live in the United States, and must have owned an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus, and/or SE running iOS 10.2.1 or later before December 21, 2017, or an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus running iOS 11.2 or later before the same date.
Applicants have until 6 October 2020 to file their claims, and there will be a final hearing on 4 December, to determine whether the settlement is approved.
Essentially this means it will take a number of months before users will see the money.
In March France’s competition and fraud watchdog DGCCRF, fined Apple 25 million euros (£21m) for deliberately slowing down older iPhone models.
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