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Apple accused of slowing older iPhones to boost sales

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2018 | Business Litigation

Missouri residents may be aware that recent tests performed by a Geekbench developer revealed that updating the iOS operating system on older iPhones hindered the performance of the devices considerably. Apple subsequently admitted that it was slowing older models to extend battery life, but critics of the Cupertino-based technology giant believe the real motive for the throttling was higher sales. Litigation is often the end result when companies with large cash reserves are accused of acting improperly, and Apple now faces at least nine class action lawsuits.

A lawsuit filed in Apple’s home state of California seeks $999 billion in damages for unfair competition and fraud through concealment. The smartphone manufacturer took action to avoid a public relations disaster by publishing a letter of apology to its customers on Dec. 28. In the letter, the company denies the allegations leveled against it and maintains that any decisions regarding the performance of older models were made with users in mind.

Apple also extended a financial olive branch to its customers by lowering the cost of replacement batteries by $50 to $29 for the next year. Reports of software updates slowing older iPhones have also caused problems for Apple overseas. In France, a consumer advocacy group has filed a criminal complaint against the technology company under the country’s planned obsolescence laws.

Attorneys with experience in business litigation may advise their clients to avoid protracted legal battles when allegations of impropriety have been made. They may suggest that carefully worded nondisclosure clauses be included when any settlement offers are made to plaintiffs who have filed potentially embarrassing lawsuits.