Italy and South Korea on Thursday joined a growing list of countries in which class-action lawsuits and government investigations into Apple's iPhone battery slowdowns are underway.

Italy's antitrust body revealed it had opened a probe into allegations that Apple used iOS updates to slow older smartphones and push clients into buying new models (via Reuters). The Italian watchdog said Apple had failed to inform customers that the updates might have a negative impact on the performance of their phones, suggesting the company might have infringed four separate articles of the national consumers' code.

iphone 6s battery
In a first among the recent wave of battery probes, Samsung is also suspected of orchestrating "a general commercial policy taking advantage of the lack of certain components to curb the performance times of their products and induce consumers to buy new versions," said the Italian watchdog. If found guilty, the two companies risk multi-million euro fines.

Meanwhile, a South Korean consumer group has filed a criminal complaint against Apple CEO Tim Cook, accusing his company of defrauding iPhone users by slowing down devices without warning to compensate for poor battery performance.

In its complaint, filed Thursday, the advocacy group Citizens United for Consumer Sovereignty accused Apple of destruction of property and fraud. According to Reuters, the group also represents around 120 plaintiffs in a civil damage suit filed against Apple earlier in January.

Apple has already admitted that it slows down some older iPhones with degraded batteries during times of peak power usage in order to prevent unexpected shutdowns, and accepts that it should have provided a clearer explanation when it introduced the power management feature in iOS 10.2.1.

Following an apology, Apple has implemented a battery replacement program that allows all customers with an iPhone 6, 6s, 7, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, 7 Plus, and SE to replace their batteries for a reduced fee through the end of 2018.

Apple has also said it is introducing better battery monitoring features in a future iOS update, which will include the ability for customers to turn off the power management feature it introduced in iOS 10.2.1. However, despite efforts to rectify the issue, the company is now facing lawsuits, state investigations, or consumer group probes in countries including China, France, and the U.S. over the controversy.

Top Rated Comments

YaBe Avatar
53 months ago
What is there to investigate? Apple said the slowdowns are to prevent random shutdowns which occurred on iOS 10-10.2. Everything is cleared up.

Not to mention we'll be getting a toggle to turn off throttling on iOS 11.3. Just drop this already.
The sole fact that this "has been cleared up" AFTER investigation started should tell you something, and the Toggle we will be getting, is a consequences of that, so for me, long lives this kind of things, they will help getting a better product.

Had Apple been honest and upfront from the beginning we would not have needed this kind of actions.

EDIT:
Apple was also saying that they weren't slowing iPhones down, we all know how that went. Don't believe everything a Company (any company) tells you.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bpp85 Avatar
53 months ago
How shocking - Italy (arguably a hotbed for corruption if history is anything to go by so hardly the most saintly of administrations) probes both Apple and Samsung, yet South Korea conveniently just focus's on Apple.

Go figure! :rolleyes:
Are you an American? Every time another country is mentioned Americans seem to start dissing other countries, it’s getting really annoying. What Apple did with slowing down phones was wrong and other countries are going to investigate this issue!
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Stella Avatar
53 months ago
This post is just sad. Start a rant against each country why don’t you!

Countries have every right to investigate this.

Why do you take it so personally?
How shocking - Italy (arguably a hotbed for corruption if history is anything to go by so hardly the most saintly of administrations) probes both Apple and Samsung, yet South Korea conveniently just focus's on Apple.

Go figure! :rolleyes:
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bpp85 Avatar
53 months ago
Sadly for you, I'm not, I'm a Brit. But way to go in slamming the yanks.

And what Apple did was just fine according the the EULA, at least in the United States where the EULA was drafted and where a lot of whiners come from whining that their out-of-warranty device is apparently out-of-warranty.

You may find my post annoying; meanwhile I find all the whining crybabies out there who apparently feel that Apple needs to give them freebies and want to sue them as a result (45 class-action lawsuits last I remember) to be equally as annoying.
I was not slamming “the yanks”. I just noticed a lot of Americans posting negative stuff when another country is mentioned, so I figured you could be an American, but considering the UK’s view of EU lately I can add you guys to the list as well :D:p

I haven’t noticed people wanting freebies. When I buy an Apple product I want that product to work as advertised for 24 months with normal use. Is that too much to ask for?
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OllyW Avatar
53 months ago
My bet is most people didn't even care or realise it was happening and even when Apple updates iOS to allow users to make the choice, most will take a longer battery life over more power and an unstable phone.
Some people did notice their phones getting slower but a lot of MR members didn't believe them.

10.3.x deliberate slow down (https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/10-3-x-deliberate-slow-down.2041133/)
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bpp85 Avatar
53 months ago
Bankrupt countries want a few billion pieces of the Apple pie.
Maybe some countries want to investigate this issue further to see if Apple violated consumer rights in those countries?
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Upcoming Products 2022 Feature

Gurman: Apple Preparing 'Widest Array of New Hardware Products in Its History' for Fall

Sunday January 23, 2022 10:32 am PST by
Apple is working on a number of new products that are set to launch this fall, and Bloomberg's Mark Gurman says that it will be "the widest array" of new devices that Apple has introduced in its history. In his latest "Power On" newsletter, Gurman explains that Apple is working on four new flagship iPhones (iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Max, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max), an updated low-end Ma...
macbook pro 14 16 2021

Three Months After Launch, Apple Still Struggling to Meet Demand for Redesigned 14-Inch and 16-Inch MacBook Pro

Monday January 24, 2022 7:12 am PST by
Three months after their launch, the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros continue to experience high demand and seemingly short supply, with shipping dates for both models stretching into multiple weeks in several of Apple's key markets. In the United States, the baseline 14-inch MacBook Pro with the M1 Pro chip is estimated to ship in three to four weeks, promising an arrival by at least...
General Dropbox Feature

macOS 12.3 Will Include Cloud Storage Changes Affecting Dropbox and OneDrive

Tuesday January 25, 2022 3:31 pm PST by
Dropbox today announced that users who update to macOS 12.3 once that software version becomes available may temporarily encounter issues with opening online-only files in some third-party apps on their Mac. In a support document and an email to customers, Dropbox said it is actively working on full support for online-only files on macOS 12.3 and will begin rolling out an updated version of...
Questionable Design Decisions

Apple's Most Questionable Design Decisions in Recent Memory

Sunday January 23, 2022 2:59 am PST by
Apple has always emphasized the depth of thought that goes into the design of its products. In the foreword to Designed by Apple in California, a photo book released by the company in 2016, Jony Ive explains how Apple strives "to define objects that appear effortless" and "so simple, coherent and inevitable that there could be no rational alternative." But every once in a while even Apple...
Apple Watch Red Yellow Green Feature 1

Apple Launches Black Unity Braided Solo Loop With 'Unity Lights' Watch Face

Wednesday January 26, 2022 6:05 am PST by
Apple today announced the Black Unity Braided Solo Loop for the Apple Watch, as well as a new downloadable watch face, to celebrate Black History Month. Following the launch of the limited edition Black Unity Apple Watch Series 6 and Sport Band in 2021, Apple today launched the Black Unity Braided Solo Loop as part of its celebrations for Black History Month this year.Apple is launching a...
att gigabit internet

AT&T Bringing $180/Month 5-Gigabit Internet to 70 Cities

Monday January 24, 2022 9:20 am PST by
AT&T today announced the launch of upgraded AT&T Fiber plans, which support speeds of up to 5 Gigabits for some customers. There are two separate plans, one "2 GIG" plan and one "5 GIG" plan, available to new and existing AT&T Fiber subscribers. According to AT&T, the new plans are available to nearly 5.2 million customers across 70 metro areas including Los Angeles, Atlanta, Chicago, San...
intel vs m1 max chip purple

Benchmarks Confirm Intel's Latest Core i9 Chip Outperforms Apple's M1 Max With Several Caveats

Wednesday January 26, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Benchmark results have started to surface for MSI's new GE76 Raider, one of the first laptops to be powered by Intel's new 12th-generation Core i9 processor. Intel previously said that its new high-end Core i9 processor is faster than Apple's M1 Max chip in the 16-inch MacBook Pro and, as noted by Macworld, early Geekbench 5 results do appear to confirm this claim, but there are several...
ios 15

Apple Releases iOS 15.3 and iPadOS 15.3 With Fix for Safari Bug That Leaks Browsing Activity

Wednesday January 26, 2022 10:00 am PST by
Apple today released iOS 15.3 and iPadOS 15.3, the third major updates to the iOS and iPadOS 15 operating systems that were released in September 2021. iOS and iPadOS 15.3 come almost two weeks after the release of iOS and iPadOS 15.2.1, minor bug fix updates. The iOS 15.3 and iPadOS 15.3 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in ...