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Apple to pay USD 500 million for slowing down older iPhones

A class-action lawsuit had been filed against Apple accusing it of slowing down older iPhone models in an effort to make users buy new ones. To settle the lawsuit, Apple is about to fork out USD 500 million. That amounts to around RM2 billion.

According to the proposed settlement agreement which was released on Friday in US District Court in San Jose, California, Apple needs to pay the owners of certain iPhone models USD 25 per affected device which total to a minimum of USD 310 million and a maximum of USD 500 million dollars. The dedicated amount that each user will receive could increase or decrease according to how many claims were filed as well as any additional legal fees and expenses approved by the court.

Apple had admitted in 2017 that it uses software to slow down older iPhones, which was after disappointed customers and tech analysts claimed that the updates were reducing the performance of their phones. Some of them suggested that this was a ploy to get users to buy the new iPhones. However, Apple claimed this was to address issues with older lithium-ion batteries that would cause the iPhone to shut down to protect its components.

Eventually, Apple apologised and offered battery replacements for USD 79 (RM329) which was then reduced to USD 29 (RM121) in January 2018. This replacement was also available in Malaysia for RM121 at Apple’s authorised service providers which include Machines and Switch.  The offer ended on December 31st in 2018. Apple CEO Tim Cook claimed that the company’s revenue for 2018 was affected by “significantly reduced pricing for iPhone battery replacements.”

iPhone users in the United States can file settlement claims if they owned an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus, 7, 7 Plus or SE device bought before December 21, 2017. The settlement agreement, which is subject to the approval of the judge on April 3rd, will eventually bring to an end a legal battle that has endured for two years.

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