Class Action Lawsuit Accuses Apple of Crippling iPhone 4s With iOS 9 Update

Apple today was hit with a class action lawsuit seeking over $5 million in damages for deceptive trade practices and false advertising, as noted by AppleInsider). Plaintiff Chaim Lerman says he and other iPhone 4s owners became unable to use their devices after upgrading to iOS 9 as the update "significantly slowed down" their iPhones and "interfered with the normal usage of the device."

According to the lawsuit, the plaintiffs were forced to either live with a "slow and buggy" device that "disrupts every day life" or shell out hundreds of dollars for a new iPhone.

iphone4s

When iPhone 4s owners are faced with the dilemma of continuing to use a slow, buggy phone or spend hundreds to buy a new phone, Apple often benefits because consumers will often buy a new iPhone to keep their investment in the App ecosystem. [...]

Furthermore, iPhone owners will buy a newer iPhone when faced with the choice because it is familiar and they can easily transfer their information, media, contacts, and apps without a major disruption in usage. There is no learning curve and no delays and trouble that accompany new information input. Thus Apple stands to benefit financially when older iPhones are slowed down and owners are forced to purchase a new phone.

The plaintiffs argue that Apple failed to properly warn iPhone 4s users that the update would "significantly interfere" with the performance of their phones. When Lerman and other plaintiffs upgraded their devices, they noticed a significant drop in performance in both third-party apps and basic functions like using the Phone app. Because Apple does not allow iPhone users to easily downgrade their devices to a previous iOS version, the plaintiffs feel they're forced into either using a slower phone or purchasing a new one.

Apple's advertising, the plaintiffs allege, does not mention the potential of slowed performance for iPhone 4s users, instead focusing on performance improvements. The lawsuit points towards Apple's iOS 9 website, which says the update brings "faster performance, improved security, convenient updates, and longer battery life." The plaintiffs argue that Apple must have known about the iPhone 4s' slower performance from internal testing or other means and did not warn users about potential headaches in their advertising.

This isn't the first time Apple has been accused of planned obsolescence, as the company was hit with a lawsuit in 2011 regarding the iPhone 3G and iOS 4. That case was thrown out by the judge who ruled the iOS 4 update was not a "good or service" and dismissed claims of false advertising and deceptive business practices.

Top Rated Comments

Altis Avatar
90 months ago
Agreed.

You buy a license to use their software on their terms.
What happens when that software ruins your device? Too bad, so sad?

That's a pretty awful precedent to set. At the very least, the only thing Apple would need to do is allow you to revert back to an older version of iOS. That would solve this whole issue for once and for all.
Score: 75 Votes (Like | Disagree)
LovingTeddy Avatar
90 months ago
Nobody forced you to move to iOS 7.
LOL... If you can get ride of the annoying red update badge and iOS not automatically download. The annoying badge is constant reminder that there is update for you and you'd better Fuxxking update you idiot.

Yeah, no one physically force you upgrade. But when you need do service at Apple store, when your iOS 6 no longer functioning correctly or when you need to do DFU reset, users will have no option but upgrade. If this isn't forced upgrade, then what is?
Score: 54 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Altis Avatar
90 months ago
Just reverted my iPhone 4S back to iOS 6 a few months ago. It's one of the few devices that can do it (via jailbreak) and it's absolutely amazing how well it performs now.

At navigating the OS, it's faster than my iPhone 6 now.

The updating business is my biggest complaint about Apple.
Score: 43 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tYNS Avatar
90 months ago
I wish my iPad 2 could go back to iOS 6. They literally destroyed the device forcing us to move to iOS 7 without the ability to go back. Biggest mistake I ever made was upgrading the iPad 2. Now it is a slow mess of crashes.
Score: 43 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Haxley Avatar
90 months ago
Give me a break
Score: 42 Votes (Like | Disagree)
khaosuser Avatar
90 months ago
Wow the comments on this article are insane. The plaintiff has a case if they can find a way to compare the performance before and after updating.

It's great that Apple updates devices but they shouldn't do it at the expense of the devices slowing down.
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iphone 14 pro hands snowflakes 1

Best Black Friday iPhone Deals Still Available

Wednesday November 23, 2022 1:55 pm PST by
Cellular carriers have always offered big savings on the newest iPhone models during the holidays, and Black Friday 2022 is no different. Right now we're tracking notable offers on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro devices from AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile. For even more savings, keep an eye on older models like the iPhone 13. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors....
ipad holiday bulbs

Best Black Friday iPad Deals Still Available

Thursday November 24, 2022 12:25 pm PST by
Black Friday deals have been in full swing for the better part of a month, and now that the shopping holiday is officially here we're seeing even more solid discounts on Apple devices. We're highlighting the best sales for all of Apple's product lines, and in this article you'll find the best Black Friday sales on iPad, iPad Pro, iPad Air, and iPad mini. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner ...
General Black Friday Deals 2022 Green

All the Apple Black Friday Deals You Can Still Get

Friday November 25, 2022 4:40 am PST by
Although Black Friday is now technically over, many Apple products are still seeing major discounts. In this article, you'll find every Apple device with a notable Black Friday sale that's still available. We'll be updating as prices change and new deals arrive, so be sure to keep an eye out if you don't see the sale you're looking for yet. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of...
apple watch gold ornaments

Best Black Friday Apple Watch Deals Still Available

Wednesday November 23, 2022 9:31 am PST by
We're tracking all of the best Apple product discounts for Black Friday this week, and the Apple Watch always makes a great gift around the holiday season, so you're guaranteed to find solid discounts right now. In this article, you'll discover the best Black Friday sales on Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch SE, and Apple Watch Ultra. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these...
mac imac snowflakes

Best Black Friday iMac and MacBook Deals Still Available

Thursday November 24, 2022 1:07 pm PST by
Our Black Friday coverage continues today with the best deals you can find on MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and iMac. As with all Black Friday deals, we aren't sure how long any of these will last, and prices are always fluctuating, so if you see something you want, be sure to buy it soon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a...
airpods pro 2

Apple Engineer Addresses Lack of Lossless Support on New AirPods Pro

Friday November 25, 2022 2:58 am PST by
An Apple engineer has addressed the lack of lossless audio support in the second-generation AirPods Pro in a new interview. Current Bluetooth technology in the AirPods lineup means that Apple's audio products do not support Apple Music Lossless audio. Apple has previously hinted that it may develop its own codec and connectivity standard that builds on AirPlay and supports higher quality...
maxresdefault

Nothing Phone 1 Displays AirPods Battery Level After Latest OS Update

Friday November 25, 2022 3:33 am PST by
Nothing Phone 1 users today began receiving the Nothing OS 1.1.7 update, which adds support for displaying the battery percentage of connected AirPods, amongst other improvements and bug fixes. If you own a Nothing Phone 1, you can check for the OTA update by going to Settings -> System -> System updates. Bear in mind that as support for displaying AirPods battery level is still an...
new airpods lineup black friday

Best Black Friday AirPods Deals Still Available

Tuesday November 22, 2022 10:01 am PST by
Although we've been tracking Black Friday deals for a few weeks now, the shopping holiday is officially kicking off this week and we're highlighting the best sales for each of Apple's product lines. In this article, you'll find the best Black Friday sales on AirPods 2, AirPods 3, AirPods Pro, AirPods Pro 2, and AirPods Max. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors....
Manchester United flag

No, Apple Isn't Planning to Buy Manchester United

Thursday November 24, 2022 12:19 pm PST by
Apple is not currently planning to purchase Premier League club Manchester United, according to a source familiar with the matter. A report earlier today from British tabloid The Daily Star claimed that Apple had expressed an interest in buying Manchester United for around $7 billion, but our source with direct knowledge of the situation said the report is false. Manchester United has...