Even after $500 million settlement, Apple’s iPhone woes continue, a United States multi-state probe investigating into Apple throttling older iPhones
The plan was to allegedly make older iPhones work slow so that users would buy the latest iteration of the iPhone and in doing so make a handsome profit for Apple. But it backfired and backfired hard. Apple was accused of throttling older iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus, and SE with its buggy iOS v 10.2.1 in 2017. The issue was brought to center-stage by Primate Labs research which revealed that some iPhones became slower as they aged. Based on this report, a group of iPhone users initiated a class-action suit against the Cupertino based company. Apple settled the lawsuit by agreeing a $25 payout per iPhone user amounting to a total $500 million settlement.
However, Apple’s woes don’t seem to end. Reuters has reported that Apple is facing a multi-state probe into allegations of deliberately slowing older iPhones. The documents viewed by Reuters state that the Arizona Attorney General is leading the multi-state investigation in an attempt to determine if Apple violated deceptive trade practice laws by slowing down iPhones on purpose.
The probe against Apple began in October 2018 with the Arizona AG asking Apple for data about “unexpected shutdowns” and slowing down of iPhones through iOS. Now, Reuters found that the Texas attorney general is also involved in the investigations.
Reuters report confirms that many states are involved in the probe against Apple. A source familiar with the investigations told Reuters that the probe is bipartisan as States representing both Democratic and Republican attorneys general have joined the investigation.
Apple has long claimed that older iPhone throttling was required on devices with degraded batteries where unexpected shutdowns were possible. According to Apple, slowing down the iPhones actually helps iPhone users get better battery life and prevents these devices from shutting down unexpectedly. However, if this was the reason, why did Apple agree to a $500 million settlement in the class-action lawsuit? There are some skeletons in the Apple cupboard which could tumble out!