Apple hit with £21million fine for secretly slowing down old iPhones
10 February 2020, 14:35
Technology giant Apple has been fined for secretly slowing down older iPhones.
In 2017, Apple admitted to deliberately slowing down old iPhones.
And now the US tech giant has been fined a whopping €25million (£21million) for not pre-warning consumers about it.
An investigation was launched in January 2018 by France’s Directorate General for Competition, Consumption and the Suppression of Fraud (DGCCRF).
After two years, the outcome was posted on the DGCCRF’s website, where it explained: “The DGCCRF has indeed shown that iPhone owners had not been informed that the updates of the iOS operating system (10.2.1 and 11.2) they installed were likely to slow down the operation of their device.
“These updates, released during 2017, included a dynamic power management device which, under certain conditions and especially when the batteries were old, could slow down the functioning of the iPhone 6, SE models. and 7.”
It added: “Unable to revert to the previous version of the operating system, many consumers would have been forced to change their batteries or even buy a new phone.”
While Apple has not yet commented on the decision, the company is thought to have agreed to pay the fine.
This comes after the iPhone maker previously apologised, insisting it made the move to try and help preserve battery life.
In a statement released back in 2017, it said: “We have never – and would never – do anything to intentionally shorten the life of any Apple product, or degrade the user experience to drive customer upgrades.
“We’ve been hearing feedback from our customers about the way we handle performance for iPhones with older batteries and how we have communicated that process.”
The company also announced they would reduce the cost of replacement batteries for iPhone 6s and later editions from £58 to £21 available worldwide until December 2018.
Speaking at the time, an Apple spokesperson said: “Our goal is to deliver the best experience for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices.
"Lithium-ion batteries become less capable of supplying peak current demands when in cold conditions, have a low battery charge or as they age over time, which can result in the device unexpectedly shutting down to protect its electronic components.”