Apple grapples with lawsuit battle

Tech company faces major backlash after news of tampering with devices comes to light.


Sergio Payeras

Apple has been sued by users across the world for slowing down older models of iPhones through updates intended to make the devices run smoother and prevent unexpected shutdowns. The company has thus far released apology statements to their users.

Jade Ajileye, Staff writer

Tech company Apple Inc. run by CEO Tim Cook faces over 20 class action lawsuits claiming the company intentionally slowed down older models of iPhones.

This new development began after Primate Labs founder John Poole responded to a user on Reddit who noticed his iPhone 6s worked significantly faster after he replaced the battery. Poole ran an analysis and discovered that some iPhone 6s and iPhone 7 devices were not operating at maximum performance starting with iOS 10.2.1 and iOS 11.2.

Apple then admitted to tweaking the maximum performance of older iPhones by using chemically aged batteries. This new change introduced with iOS 10.2.1 prevents the phone from unexpectedly shutting down. However, Apple never fully disclosed the methods used in order to stop unexpected shutdowns which can occur in extreme cold or hot weather.

“Our goal is to deliver the best experiences for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices,” Apple said in their released statement.

“Lithium batteries become less capable of supplying peak current demands when in cold conditions, have a low battery charge or as they age overtime, which can result in the device unexpectedly shutting down so it can protect its electronic components.”

People have, in the past, claimed Apple intentionally slows down older models of phones in order to make customers buy newer, more expensive models, so Apple’s confirmation in doing so has affected their reputation.

As soon as this information came to light, people from California and New York all the way to Israel and France filed cases against the company. These cases can cost the company upwards of millions of dollars if followed through.

Most demand that Apple refund the money of customers who bought new phones because of slowdowns on older models, make battery replacements free, and compensate all iPhone users whose phones were affected by Apple’s actions.

The multinational technology company responded by lowering the price of battery replacements to $29 all throughout 2018 and issuing an apology for its lack of communication to customers. Apple is also set to release a new iOS update that will allow the user more access to view the health of their phone’s battery.

“Last year, we released a feature for iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and iPhone SE to smooth out the instantaneous peaks only when needed to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down during these conditions,” Apple said. “We’ve now extended that feature to iPhone 7 with iOS 11.2, and plan to add support for other products in the future.”