Apple fights $2bn London lawsuit for ‘throttling’ millions of iPhones – world
LONDON: Apple Inc on Tuesday urged a London tribunal to halt a $2 billion class action lawsuit alleging it concealed faulty batteries in millions of iPhones by “throttling” them with software updates.
The tech giant is facing a lawsuit worth more than £1.6 billion, brought by consumer champion Justin Gutman on behalf of iPhone users in the United Kingdom.
Gutman’s lawyers argued in court filings that Apple concealed issues with batteries in some phone models and “stolenly” installed a power management tool that limited performance.
Apple said in written arguments that the lawsuit is “baseless” and strongly denies that its iPhones’ batteries are defective, apart from for a small number of iPhone 6s models for which it offered free battery replacements.
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The company also says that its power management update – introduced in 2017 to manage the demands of an old battery or low level of charge – only reduced an iPhone 6’s performance by an average of 10%.
Gutmann on Tuesday asked London’s Competition Appeal Tribunal to certify the case and allow it to proceed to trial.
His lawyer Philipp Moser referred to Apple’s 2020 agreements to settle the US class action on the iPhone battery issues and regulatory action by US states as reasons Apple was not saying “that never happened”.
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Moser said Apple committed to being “clearer and more upfront” with iPhone users about battery health in 2019 to the UK competition watchdog.
The company denies misleading its customers about iPhone battery issues and points to a public apology issued in 2017, offering affected customers inexpensive battery replacements.
Apple attorney David Wolfson said in court filings that the lawsuit effectively alleges that “not all batteries can provide the peak power demanded under all circumstances at all times”, which was common to all battery-powered devices.