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  • Voltaire Staff

Apple begins paying settlement money in 2020 iPhone 'slowdown' lawsuit


A hand holding an iPhone

Apple has initiated disbursing settlement payments for a 2020 settled class action lawsuit which claimed that the iPhone-maker slowed down certain of its phones' models.  


In 2020, Apple had reached an agreement to pay a maximum of $500 million to settle a lawsuit in the United States that accused the company of discreetly throttling certain iPhone models.


This week, payouts commenced for individuals who had submitted a claim, as anticipated by the "batterygate" settlement website, with payments of $92.17 per claim being distributed to recipients.


The legal action originated in December 2017, shortly after Apple disclosed its practice of controlling the maximum performance of specific iPhone models to prevent unexpected shutdowns. Apple had implemented this power management system in iOS 10.2.1, initially omitting mention of the change in the release notes.


Although Apple apologised for the lack of transparency and temporarily reduced the price of iPhone battery replacements to $29 in 2018, the company consistently denied all allegations and never admitted to any legal wrongdoing. The settlement was reached, according to Apple, solely to avoid burdensome and costly litigation.


The class action covered any US resident who owned affected iPhone models (6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, SE, 7, and 7 Plus) running specified iOS versions before December 21, 2017. The deadline for submitting a payment claim was in October 2020.


BBC reported that a similar  case is going on against Apple in UK, seeking a compensation of  £1.6bn.


The case, initiated by Justin Gutmann in June 2022, represents an estimated 24 million iPhone users.


Apple, maintaining the lawsuit's baselessness, emphasised its commitment to not intentionally shortening product lifespans. Unlike the US settlement, which focused on iPhone 6 and 7 models, the UK lawsuit extends to include damages for users of iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X devices.


The UK class action will proceed to the Court of Appeal, where the company seeks to halt the proceedings.


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