Apple Shells Out $3.4 Million to Chileans to Settle Planned Obsolescence Lawsuit
Apple will pay $3.4 million in Chile to settle a lawsuit that accused the Cupertino company of programming a limited lifespan into some of its products to force consumers to upgrade.
150,000 iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus, and SE owners sued Apple over the same "iPhone Slowdown" issue that Apple has been battling since 2017. Registered participants in Chile can get a maximum of $50.
Apple in 2017 released iOS 10.2.1 with a feature that throttled the performance of older iPhones with degrading batteries to prevent device shutdowns at peak usage times. Apple did not make it clear that mitigating these shutdowns would require device performance to be scaled back, which led to significant consumer upset and a series of lawsuits that Apple is still dealing with today.
The iOS 10.2.1 update and subsequent updates that have introduced measures to preserve battery life are aimed at making iPhones last as long as possible even when battery health declines, but Apple has had a tough time convincing the world that it's not crippling iPhones to make people spend more money.
Apple offered a worldwide battery replacement program with affordable battery upgrades for devices with degraded batteries and it also introduced new battery health features in iOS.
Apple has faced similar lawsuits in Belgium, Spain, Italy, and Portugal. Apple has already settled a class action lawsuit in the United States, shelling out between $310 and $500 million, and a state-led investigation into throttling that cost it $113 million.