Florida Lawyer Sues Apple for Renting HD Movies on Non-HD Devices

by

Apple is being sued in a new class action suit (via GigaOM) led by Florida lawyer Scott Weiselberg, who accuses the company of allowing customers with older devices supporting only standard definition films to pay for and download higher quality content.

This class action involves defendant Apple, Inc. ("Apple") and its deceptive business practice of charging a premium price for the rental of HD content programs (e.g., movies, etc.) to consumers on early versions of Apple devices that Apple knew could not play HD content, and which only played the less expensive standard definition ("SD") content that Apple downloaded at the time of the rental.

As a result, millions of customers were deceived into paying the $1 premium for HD content rentals for their SD Apple Mobile Devices.

According to the filing, Weiselberg rented and downloaded the high definition version of the movie "Big Daddy," before discovering that his iPhone did not support HD playback. HD content is often offered at a premium in the App Store, and Weiselberg says that he was "tricked" into paying an extra $1 for the content.

bigdaddylawsuit
While SD and HD content is clearly marked in the App Store, Weiselberg was not aware that his phone could not play HD content, and within the filing, he suggests that Apple should have automatically recognized the device type and prevented the purchase of HD content from an SD-only phone.

HD playback was first introduced in 2008, alongside iTunes 8.0. At that time, older iPhones and iPod touches were not able to support the new format, allowing some mistaken purchases to be made. Apple has since changed the download process, introducing warnings and preventing HD content from being downloaded by SD device, but Weiselberg believes that SD options are still too difficult for users to find.

The lawsuit seeks an unspecified amount of damages, plus interest, sustained by the Plaintiff and the Class, as well as legal fees.

Top Rated Comments

BaldiMac Avatar
99 months ago

In fairness while this is a bit frivolous, you have to agree to some extent with the logic that a non HD capable device shouldn't offer HD films. Kinda how your iPhone can't see iPad only apps :)


That logic ignores the fact that you can transfer rentals to other devices, so there is a legitimate reason to offer HD content on non-HD devices.
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Wurm5150 Avatar
99 months ago
He should sue himself for renting a movie to watch on 3.5" screen on one count and another for renting an Adam Sandler movie.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Amazing Iceman Avatar
99 months ago
This is so stupid... He could have just call Apple and ask to switch the format of his rental..

And weird... A lawyer with an old phone??? he must be a bad lawyer that makes no money...
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheKrs1 Avatar
99 months ago
Option 1: Request refund

Option 2: Learn for the future

Option 3: SUE!

Clearly the most rational choice is option 3.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jwdsail Avatar
99 months ago
Really?

Really?

When you buy or rent on iTunes, the content is playable on any device tied to your AppleID, including a Mac, PC, or AppleTV that you may have hooked up to an HDTV....

Just because I rent or buy it on one device, doesn't necessarily mean that I intend to watch it on that device.. How is Apple supposed to know???

I suppose Apple could add a nanny/idiot dialogue that states, "We see you are currently using a non-HD Device. If you do not have an HD device (iPhone 5, AppleTV, Mac, PC, iPad (Current Generation)) that you intend to view this content on, would you prefer to order the SD version of ****?"

I think that would get pretty f'in annoying after about a few rentals/purchases.....
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thedarkhalf Avatar
99 months ago
Correct me if i'm wrong, but just cause you buy the movie on one device, that doesn't mean it's only playable on said device. I thought you could buy something on the iPhone and it would be available on your iPad, Laptop and AppleTV as well.

Edit: Baldimac just answered my question :)
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

bloodoxygenapplewatch

Apple Watch Series 7 Rumored to Feature Blood Glucose Monitoring

Monday January 25, 2021 5:05 am PST by
The Apple Watch Series 7 will reportedly feature blood glucose monitoring via an optical sensor, according to ETNews. The report, which mainly focuses on the blood glucose capabilities of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, explains that Apple is intending to bring blood glucose monitoring to the upcoming Apple Watch Series 7 using a non-invasive optical sensor. Measuring blood glucose levels,...
magsafecasedangle

Apple Elaborates on Potential for iPhone 12 and MagSafe Accessories to Interfere With Implantable Medical Devices

Saturday January 23, 2021 2:42 pm PST by
Since the launch of iPhone 12 models in October, Apple has acknowledged that the devices may cause electromagnetic interference with medical devices like pacemakers and defibrillators, but the company has now shared additional information. Apple added the following paragraph to a related support document today:Medical devices such as implanted pacemakers and defibrillators might contain...
14

Apple Releases iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 With New Camera Warnings and Bug Fixes

Tuesday January 26, 2021 10:04 am PST by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.4, the fourth major updates to the iOS 14 operating system that was initially released in September. iOS and iPadOS 14.4 come more than a month after the release of iOS and iPadOS 14.3, updates that brought new emojis, Intercom support, and more. The iOS and iPadOS 14.4 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible...
Top Stories 44 Feature

Top Stories: 'Thinner and Lighter' MacBook Air, Smaller iPhone 13 Notch, iOS 14.4 Incoming

Saturday January 23, 2021 6:00 am PST by
We continued to hear a lot more about Apple's plans for its Mac lineup this week, including word of a high-end redesigned MacBook Air and the return of an SD card slot as part of the upcoming MacBook Pro redesign. It also sounds like Apple has been working on Face ID for Mac, but it won't be appearing in a redesigned iMac this year as originally planned. This week also saw rumors about the...
14

Apple Releasing iOS 14.4 and watchOS 7.3 Later Today

Tuesday January 26, 2021 7:20 am PST by
In its Black History Month announcement this morning, Apple has confirmed that iOS 14.4 and watchOS 7.3 will be released later today. watchOS 7.3 expands the ECG app on the Apple Watch Series 4 and newer to Japan, Mayotte, Thailand, and the Philippines, while iOS 14.4 introduces a notification on iPhone 12 models with non-genuine cameras. Both software updates also add support for a new...
maxresdefault

Microsoft Touts Surface Pro 7 as 'The Better Choice' Over MacBook Pro in New Ad

Saturday January 23, 2021 11:02 am PST by
Microsoft yesterday shared a new ad on YouTube titled "Microsoft Surface Pro 7: The Better Choice," in which the company compares its tablet computer to Apple's 13-inch M1 MacBook Pro, as spotted by MSPoweruser. The ad highlights the Surface Pro 7's touchscreen and included stylus as opposed to only a "little bar" (the Touch Bar) on the MacBook Pro. Other advantages of the Surface Pro 7...
apple watch black unity

Apple Celebrates Black History Month With Limited-Edition Watch, Featured Apps and Books, and More

Tuesday January 26, 2021 6:14 am PST by
Apple today announced that it will be celebrating Black History Month with curated content that highlights and amplifies Black creators, artists, developers, and businesses across the App Store, Apple Music, the Apple TV app, Apple Books, Apple Podcasts, and more. The content will be featured throughout the month of February. Black Unity Sport Band has "Truth. Power. Solidarity." ...
7

Apple Releases watchOS 7.3 With Unity Watch Face, Expanded ECG Availability and More

Tuesday January 26, 2021 10:03 am PST by
Apple today released watchOS 7.3, the third major update to the watchOS 7 operating system that was released in September. watchOS 7.3 comes more than a month after watchOS 7.2, an update that brought support for Apple Fitness+ ‌‌The watchOS 7.3 update‌‌ can be downloaded for free through the dedicated Apple Watch app on the iPhone by going to General > Software Update. To install...
time to walk apple watch

Apple Fitness+ Feature 'Time to Walk' Launching Soon With Audio Stories From Special Guests

Saturday January 23, 2021 7:13 pm PST by
Earlier this week, Apple seeded the watchOS 7.3 Release Candidate, which is typically the final beta version of a software update. The release notes for the update list a new "Time to Walk" feature for Apple Fitness+ subscribers, described as "an audio experience in the Workout app where guests share inspiring stories as you walk." Apple Fitness+ subscribers will be able to open the Workout...
apple dan riccio

Dan Riccio Transitioning to New Project, John Ternus to Lead Apple's Hardware Engineering Team

Monday January 25, 2021 2:05 pm PST by
Apple today announced that current Apple hardware engineering SVP Dan Riccio is transitioning to a new role where he will focus on an unspecified project, with John Ternus set to take over as Apple's senior vice president of hardware engineering. In a statement, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that Riccio made Apple a better and more innovative company, and that Ternus will bring a deep expertise...