Apple sued for slowing down older model iPhones with new iOS

Plaintiff brings this class action on behalf of himself and all others similarly situated who purchased or otherwise owned an iPhone 6 smartphone or other older model iPhone manufactured and sold by Apple. Plaintiff and other iPhone owners began experiencing significant slowdown and performance issues with their phones when Apple updated the operating software of the phones to iOS 10.2.1 earlier this year. Apple represented to the public that iOS 10.2.1 and subsequent iOS updates were fully compatible with, and intended for use in, iPhone 6 and other older iPhone models. Plaintiff and the other Class Members were effectively compelled to update their iPhones to iOS 10.2.1 because Apple claimed the update provided “bug fixes and improves the security” of their phones.

As alleged, after updating to iOS 10.2.1, Plaintiff and others similarly situated, without any warning or notice, were left with phones that operated in a sluggish manner and failed to perform at the normal, expected standard prior to the update. Indeed, after the iOS update, iPhone owners experienced problems and delays using mobile applications, or “Apps,” on their phones, slowdowns in downloading data, battery drain, Wi-Fi and internet connectivity issues, and inadvertent shutdowns, among other concerns. Plaintiff and the other Class Members have therefore been harmed because they were forced to update their iPhones with operating software that degraded the performance and functionality of their phones, leaving them with phones that were significantly impaired in value.

On December 20, 2017, Apple confirmed that the iOS 10.2.1 update was responsible for slowing down and hindering the performance of the iPhone 6 and other older model iPhones. Apple claims the batteries used in iPhone 6 models were prone to causing unexpected shutdowns, and that the iOS 10.2.1 update was intended to prevent such shutdowns. To address the battery issues purportedly affecting iPhone 6 models, Apple used the iOS 10.2.1 update to “throttle,” or slow down, the processor speeds of those phones. Thus, as part of this purported “fix,” Apple intentionally caused the slowdown and impairment of its iPhone 6 and older model iPhones, to the detriment of Plaintiff and other Class Members.

Apple did not disclose to the public at the time of the iOS 10.2.1 update that it would be throttling the processor speeds of the iPhone 6 and other older model iPhones. Nor did Apple disclose at the time of the iOS update that there were any issues surrounding the batteries in those iPhones.

According to the complaint, a simple and easy fix of the purported shutdown problem would have been to provide notice to iPhone users and offer to replace the batteries in the iPhone 6 and other older-model phones. Apple, however, has never offered its customers the option of replacing the batteries in those phones. As a result, owners of the iPhone 6 and other older iPhone models have been stuck with inferior, poorly-performing phones, or worse yet, feel compelled to spend hundreds of dollars more to upgrade a newer model iPhone.

Complaint

Apple named in class action lawsuit over touch screen defect in iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

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This action is brought by Plaintiffs, individually and on behalf of a class of similarly situated owners of Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus (together, the “iPhones”). This action arises from Apple’s concealment of a material design defect that causes the touchscreens on the iPhones to become unresponsive and fail for their essential purpose as smartphones (the “Touchscreen Defect”).

As alleged, Apple has long been aware of the defective iPhones. Yet, notwithstanding its longstanding knowledge of this design defect, Apple routinely has refused to repair the iPhones without charge when the defect manifests.

Many other iPhone owners have communicated with Apple’s employees and agents to request that Apple remedy and/or address the Touchscreen Defect and/or resultant damage at no expense. Apple has failed and/or refused to do so.

As a result of Apple’s unfair, deceptive and/or fraudulent business practices, owners of the iPhones, including Plaintiffs, have suffered an ascertainable loss of money and/or property and/or value. The unfair and deceptive trade practices committed by Apple were conducted in a manner giving rise to substantial aggravating circumstances.

Had Plaintiffs and other Class members known about the Touchscreen Defect at the time of purchase, they would not have bought the iPhones, or would have paid substantially less for them.

As a result of the Touchscreen Defect and the monetary costs associated with attempting to repair such defect, Plaintiffs and the Class members have suffered injury in fact, incurred damages, and have otherwise been harmed by Apple’s conduct

COMPLAINT

 

Apple named in class action lawsuit over Error 53 leaving IPhones inoperative

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The class action was brought on behalf of Apple phone users that suffered an Error 53 code which is the result of an imbedded function within iOS, Apple’s operating system, that affects iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, and iPhone 6s Plus smartphones. The code has rendered thousands of the smartphones completely disabled or “bricked” after its users updated iOS or restored the device from a backup.

As alleged, consumers began receiving an Error 53 code in early 2015, and likely earlier. Many consumers raised the issue with Apple representatives immediately because an inoperable phone represented hardships both personally and professionally. Apple representatives told consumers that disabled phones could not be fixed under warranty and were a problem the consumer created by using an unauthorized repair service to fix a hardware issue with the phone. Some consumers had used a repair service other than an Apple service to fix problems such as broken screens and “Home” buttons, but they pointed out to Apple representatives that nothing in marketing materials or purchase documents ever disclosed that their iPhone products would be destroyed by an imbedded software code if they had repaired iPhones using an independent service and then updated to certain iOS versions. Other consumers advised Apple representatives that no repairs had been done but the error code had disabled their iPhone anyway. Apple has regularly advised consumers who have experienced the Error 53 code that their situation will not be fixed under warranty and, frequently, that the only solution is to purchase a new phone. Despite months of opportunity to provide a replacement iPhone and/or restore existing iPhones, Apple has offered no remedy to or relief for its customers. This lawsuit seeks to provide both remedy and relief for consumers of the Affected Models who have experienced the Error 53 code.

The “security features” and “security” measures that gave rise to the Error 53 code were included within iOS version 8.0.1 and all subsequent versions of the iOS 8 operating system, as well as the iOS 9 operating system and subsequent versions. Despite knowing about the security features, Apple took no steps to warn consumers and owners of the Affected Models that updating software or restoring data would result in an Error 53 code that would render the phone inoperable and cause data loss. As of November 2015, it was estimated that more than 62 million units of the Affected Models were in use in the United States, meaning that Apple’s misleading and unfair practices as alleged in this Complaint have had and will continue to have a widespread impact on consumers throughout the nation.

Complaint

Apple named in class action lawsuit over storage capacity misrepresentations and omissions relating to use of Apple’s iOS 8 operating system

This case challenges storage capacity misrepresentations and omissions relating to use of Apple’s iOS 8 operating system. As set forth in greater detail below, iOS 8 uses an unexpectedly large percentage of the storage capacity on 8 GB and 16 GB iPhones, iPads and iPods (the “Devices”).

According to the complaint Apple fails to disclose to consumers that as much as 23.1% of the advertised storage capacity of the Devices will be consumed by iOS 8 and unavailable for consumers when consumers purchase Devices that have iOS 8 installed. Reasonable consumers, such as Plaintiff, do not expect this marked discrepancy between the advertised level of capacity and the available capacity of the Devices, as the operating system and other storage space unavailable to consumers occupies an extraordinary percentage of their Devices’ limited storage capacity.

Moreover, after Defendant provides materially less than the advertised capacity on the Devices, Defendant aggressively markets a monthly fee-based storage system called iCloud. Using these sharp business tactics, Defendant gives less storage capacity than advertised, only to offer to sell that capacity in a desperate moment, e.g., when a consumer is trying to record or take photos at a child or grandchild’s recital, basketball game or wedding. To put this in context, each gigabyte of storage Apple – its customers amounts to approximately 400-500 high-resolution photographs.

The complaint is brought on behalf of the following classes (“the Classes”): (1) (a) an “iOS 8 Purchaser Class” consisting of all persons or entities in the United States who purchased an iPhone, iPod or iPad with represented storage capacity of 16 GB or less with iOS 8 pre-installed for purposes other than resale or distribution, and (b) an “iOS 8 Purchaser CLRA Subclass” consisting of all persons in the United States who purchased an iPhone, iPod or iPad with represented storage capacity of 16 GB or less with iOS 8 pre-installed for personal, family or household use within the four years preceding the filing of this Complaint, (2)(a) an “Upgrade Class” consisting of all persons or entities in the United States who upgraded an iPhone, IPod or iPad with represented storage capacity of 16 GB or less to iOS 8, and (b) an “Upgrade CLRA Subclass” consisting of all persons or entities in the United States who upgraded an iPhone, IPod or iPad used for personal, family or household use with represented storage capacity of 16 GB or less to iOS 8.

Complaint

 

Apple named in class action lawsuit alleging defect with the Apple Lightning connector

This is a class action lawsuit brought by Plaintiff on behalf of a nationwide class of individuals who purchased an Apple product that came equipped with the Apple Lightning connector (“Lightning”) from Defendant, Apple, Inc. (“Apple” or “Defendant”). To date, the Apple products that can be charged and connected to the computer exclusively by the Lightning include: the iPhone 5, iPad (fourth generation), iPad Mini, iPod Nano (seventh generation), and iPod Touch (fifth generation) (collectively “Apple devices”).

As alleged, on September 12, 2012, Apple introduced Lightning as the new cable used to charge and synchronize content for its new hardware devices, including the highly anticipated iPhone 5, which sold in excess of five million units over the weekend following its launch. In its official press release materials on September 12, 2012, Apple touted the new Lightning cable as being “designed for today’s uses” and “smaller, smarter and more durable than the previous connector.”

Based upon Apple’s representations, Plaintiff and members of the Class purchased the new Apple devices with the Lightning connectors.  However, contrary to Apple’s representations, advertisements, and statements, the Lightning is defective and is prone to fraying, breakage, deterioration, and failure, and does substantially fray, break, deteriorate, and fail.

In particular, the Lightning end that plugs into the Apple device deteriorates, externally and/or internally, to such a degree so as to make charging the Apple device completely impossible, or possible only by positioning the cord in a specific manner, using electric tape, or something similar, to hold the Lightning cable together, or other means to maintain the connection and angle between the Lightning and the Apple device. The deterioration can and does become so severe that the exposed wires of the eroded Lightning create a safety hazard. These exposed wires have led to sparks and fires, endangering the health and safety of consumers and the public.

The defect in the Lightning renders it unsuitable for its principal and intended purpose; namely, being the exclusive means for synchronizing data for and charging the battery of the associated Apple devices. The consistent failure of the Lightning leaves consumers with useless, expensive Apple devices, unless and until they purchase a replacement Lightning. Due to the Lightning’s proprietary nature, consumers are forced to purchase replacements directly from Apple, the sole manufacturer of the Lightning, in order to recharge and continue using their Apple devices.

Apple settles class action suit over failure to honor warranty claims associated with water damage.

Apple Inc. agreed to pay $53 million to settle a class-action suit associated with warranties for iPhones and iPods.  The money is to be distributed to approximately 153,000 customers who had been denied warranty coverage under an Apple policy associated with handling water damage.

The lawsuit suit stemmed from technology Apple built into its iPhones and some iPod music players that was designed to indicate when the devices had come into contact with liquid, such as through submersion or a large spill.

According to the complaint, Apple had a “liquid damage policy,” which required Apple’s employees to deny warranty coverage for any device if the liquid indicator had been triggered by changing color. The plaintiffs alleged that the indicators, which were manufactured by 3M Co., could be triggered by moisture or humidity during ordinary use.

Investigation of Apple iPhone 4 over power button failure

Attorneys are investigating claims that Apple’s iPhone 4 suffers from a faulty flex cable that controls the power button on the popular phone rendering unsuitable for its intended use.  There have been wide spread consumer complaints about the power button failure on these phones occurring right after the expiration of the one year warranty period but before the useful life expectancy of the phone expires.  Consumers seeking to fix or replace the phone for this issue are being charged $150 by Apple.