Updated | Google Pixel and Pixel XL compensation goes live
It has been a few years since we reported on some Google Pixel and Pixel XL handsets experiencing microphone issues. Google confirmed that the issue affected a select number of devices, with it placing the number at around 1% of devices sold before March 2017. The company replaced afflicted Pixel and Pixel XL handsets but was then hit by a class-action lawsuit, which has only recently been resolved with an agreement to pay US$7.25 million in compensation.
Now is your opportunity to receive a portion of the settlement, although there are some conditions that you must meet to be eligible. Firstly, you must have purchased a first-generation Pixel or Pixel XL in the US that Google manufactured before January 4, 2017. You must also have bought the device to keep it or for private use, rather than to resell it. Secondly, you will only be eligible to claim if you did not receive a replacement device "manufactured after January 3, 2017, or refurbished after June 5, 2017". Moreover, you must not be a Google employee, a family member of the presiding judges or a lawyer related to the case.
If you meet all those criteria, then you can file a claim here. Alternatively, you can print this version and mail it to the address in the header of the document. There are several payment options, and your device need not have experienced microphone or speaker issues too. We have included a table below detailing the compensation options, as stated by Kurtzman Carson Consultants (KCC):
|Audio defect?||Able to provide evidence?||Single or multiple devices||Compensation amount|
There are some payment caveats that are worth keeping in mind before you claim. Firstly, the settlement caps the US$20 pool at 25% of the total pay-out, which equates to 90,625 claimants. If more than that number of people submit a US$20 claim, then that amount will be prorated down. Additionally, if you paid an insurance deductible to receive a replacement Pixel, then you will only be entitled to a refund of that deductible even if you can submit evidence of the audio fault. Finally, the US$350 pool will be prorated up or down depending on how much is left in the settlement fund after paying other claimants.
You have until October 7, 2019, to submit a claim. Declining to seek compensation still allows you to sue Google LLC relating to the Pixel or Pixel XL. You can also write to the United States District Court for the Northern District of California about why you like or dislike the settlement offer. KCC stresses that you cannot request a larger compensation sum, but you can attend the hearing on December 6, 2019, to address the court about the fairness of the Settlement, should you wish to do so.
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There have been numerous reports of emails from KCC being filtered into people's spam mailboxes, specifically Gmail. A related email Reddit thread currently has 114 comments, with the original poster stating that the email should contain "Weeks v. Google LLC (First Generation Pixel)" in the subject line.
To reiterate, the class action only applies to purchases made in the US. We know of no comparable lawsuits in other countries.