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
105 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
105 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
105 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
105 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
105 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
105 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

Flat 2021 MacBook Pro Mockup Feature

Unreleased Apple Macs and Apple Watches Listed in Eurasian Database Ahead of Fall Product Launches

Monday August 2, 2021 9:34 am PDT by
Apple is preparing for a slew of fall product launches according to new filings that showed up today in the Eurasian Economic Commission database. There are listings for new Mac and Apple Watch models, all of which have previously unknown model identifiers that indicate that they're upcoming devices. There are six new Apple Watch identifiers, including A2473, A2474, A2475, A2476, A2477, and...
ifixit iphone12 mini

Apple to Make Space for Larger Batteries in iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks By Adopting Slimmer Peripheral Chips

Monday August 2, 2021 2:12 am PDT by
For future iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks, Apple plans to use smaller internal components in an effort to increase the size of the device's battery, according to DigiTimes. Image Credit: iFixit Specifically, Apple plans to "significantly increase the adoption" of IPDs or integrated passive devices for the peripheral chips in its products. These news chips will be slimmer in size and allow for...
Apple Watch 7 Unreleased Feature

Apple Watch Series 7 to Focus on One Major Upgrade

Wednesday August 4, 2021 2:12 am PDT by
The upcoming Apple Watch Series 7 will focus on one important feature in an attempt to tempt existing Apple Watch users that have an older device to upgrade, according to recent reports. Apple may skip adding new health sensors to this year's Apple Watch Series 7 in favor of improving the device's battery life. The company is said to be adopting new double-sided System in Package (SiP)...
magic keyboard touch id

Apple Makes Magic Keyboard With Touch ID Available for Separate Purchase

Tuesday August 3, 2021 5:22 am PDT by
Apple has made the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID, which previously was only available with the purchase of the new 24-inch iMac, available for purchase individually for $149. Apple also retails the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and a numeric keypad for $179. A standard Magic Keyboard without Touch ID or a numeric keypad is available for $99, and a new Magic Trackpad for $129. One major...
iPhone 13 Wi Fi 6E feature update

Wi-Fi 6E Explained: What It Could Mean for iPhone 13 and Beyond

Monday August 2, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
The iPhone 13 is widely expected to come with Wi-Fi 6E capabilities, and while it may seem rather nuanced to the average consumer, with only improved speeds and being "up to date" in the realm of Wi-Fi technology, it's actually a fairly significant improvement, laying the groundwork for much of what we know the future holds. To truly understand Wi-Fi 6E, MacRumors sat down for an exclusive...
applestoredown

Apple's Online Store Temporarily Down [Update: Back Up]

Tuesday August 3, 2021 4:01 pm PDT by
Apple's online Apple Store is down at the current time, and attempting to access it to make a purchase gives the standard "Be Right Back" message. Given that it's a Tuesday night/afternoon in the United States and we're not expecting any new products this week, it's likely that this is a temporary maintenance outage that is not related to a new product release. The Apple Store app is also...
themorningshowcarrell

Apple Decided Not to Buy Reese Witherspoon's 'Hello Sunshine' Media Company

Monday August 2, 2021 2:02 pm PDT by
Reese Witherspoon's media company "Hello Sunshine" recently courted various buyers, and while Apple was one of parties interested in buying Hello Sunshine, the Cupertino company did not end up going through with the purchase. Hello Sunshine was valued at around $900 million thanks to its involvement in popular series like The Morning Show," "Big Little Lies," and "Little Fires Everywhere,"...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Apple Brings China's Luxshare Precision into iPhone 13 Supply Chain to Meet Production Targets

Wednesday August 4, 2021 12:19 am PDT by
Apple is tapping more Chinese suppliers as it seeks to meet ambitious targets for iPhone 13 production, according to a new report by Nikkei Asia. Apple is set to produce between 90 million and 95 million iPhones through January, according to a previous Nikkei report, and China's Luxshare Precision Industry has won 3% of orders away from Taiwanese rivals Foxconn and Pegatron. Luxshare will...
mac pro new graphics

Apple Introduces New High-End Graphics Options for Mac Pro

Tuesday August 3, 2021 7:34 am PDT by
Apple today began offering new high-end graphics upgrade options for both the tower and rack versions of the Mac Pro desktop computer. This comes on the same day that Apple started selling the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID on a standalone basis. As noted by CNN Underscored's Jake Krol, the Mac Pro can now be configured with new AMD Radeon Pro W6800X, W6800X Duo, or W6900X graphics when...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...