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Apple faces US$2 billion battery-related lawsuit in UK

Apple iPhone SE teardown (Source: Vrm24)
Apple iPhone SE teardown (Source: Vrm24)
Over a year ago, consumer rights activist Justin Gutmann filed a lawsuit against Apple concerning the alleged throttling of iPhones which occurred in 2017. Last week, Apple failed to stop the case from going to trial. If the Cupertino giant loses, the fine could go up to US$1.9 billion plus interest.

In June 2022, consumer rights activist Justin Gutmann filed a lawsuit with the UK's Competition Appeals Tribunal against Apple's alleged throttling of older iPhones via a software update. While he claims, in behalf of 24 million iPhone users in the UK, that this measure was taken to force users into buying new handsets, Apple says this was only done to help them avoid random shutdowns. Last week, the tribunal ruled that the case can proceed.

If Apple loses the trial, the fine could go all the way to the equivalent of US$1.9 billion, plus interest. However, this will take time and, although the Cupertino-headquartered tech giant did not manage to block the mass lawsuit, the Competition Appeals Tribunal also said that Gutmann's case needs to be more concise. Last week's ruling said that that the "lack of clarity and specificity" needs to be ironed out before the start of any trial.

In the past, Apple lost a few trials related to its throttling practices. In Italy, the company had to pay €10 million back in 2021, when it was fined alongside Google, but Apple's appeal was accepted and a final ruling has not been issued yet. In the US, the iPhone makers were forced to cough out no less than US$310 million earlier this year and US$113 back in 2020 in similar cases. Remains to see when and how Gutmann's ongoing battle with Apple in the UK will end.

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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2023 11 > Apple faces US$2 billion battery-related lawsuit in UK
Codrut Nistor, 2023-11- 6 (Update: 2023-11- 7)