Italian Competition Authority, Apple, and its Phones

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Apple and Italy

Apple is famous around the world for its smartphones, computers, and other devices. However, the Cupertino-based company is no stranger to lawsuits and investigations. It is worth mentioning that the Italian Competition Authority has fined Apple, it means the tech giant will pay around $12 million for making misleading claims regarding the waterproofing of its iPhones. As a reminder, affected iPhone models go back to 2017’s iPhone 8 as well as iPhone 8 Plus. 

 The Italian Competition Authority criticized Apple for not not being clear enough about its water resistance claims. According to the regulator, claims about iPhones being water resistant for up to 30 minutes at depths of up to four meters only apply in certain circumstances like controlled lab tests with pure water. 

This is not the end of the story, as the regulator also criticized the tech giant’s disclaimer. According to Apple, water damage is not covered as part of the iPhone’s warranty, despite marketing the phones’ water resistance. 

Apple and legal problems 

As mentioned above, Apple is no stranger when it comes to lawsuits and investigations. Importantly, the latest fine comes a little over two years after the Italian regulator fined Apple alongside another tech giant Samsung. The regulator fined tech giants for throttling older devices with software updates. The regulator imposed Apple fine on Apple worth 10 million euros for a pair of violations, including not giving its customers enough information about their devices’ batteries, and throttling the performance of older phones without warning. 

In 2018, the Italian Competition Authority fined $5.7 million against Apple for problems that occurred on various models of the iPhone 6. The problems occurred when owners installed iOS 10. The tech giant developed iOS 10 for the iPhone 7. Importantly, the new iOS required greater energy demands. As a result, older phones experienced unexpected shutdowns. Importantly, the company’s fix, which came as an update in 10.2.1 was released without warning customers that it would throttle CPUs on older devices with aging batteries to prevent the occurrences of these random shutdowns. 

Moreover, the regulator decided to impose another fine for not giving customers information about their devices’ batteries. 

Let’s get back to 2020. Last month, Apple agreed to a second settlement this time with 34 U.S. states. The company agreed to pay $113 million apart from the first settlement. The company should work with customers to avoid such lawsuits in the future.

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