Apple has agreed to pay up to $500 million to settle litigation accusing it of quietly slowing down older iPhones as it launched new iPhone models.
The minimum total payout would be $310 million but it could rise to $500 million depending on the number of iPhones that are covered in the settlement.
A move believed to have been intentional to prompt the iPhone users to upgrade the newly launched models. The slow down on iPhones affected all devices operating on iOS 10.2.1 or later operating system.
In the year 2018, iPhone users filed over 44 class actions against Apple on iPhone throttling. With an additional 5 foreign filings recorded as pending on the same issue.
Consumers raised concerns about their phone’s performance noting that their phones’ performance suffered after they installed Apple software updates. Which misled them into believing that their phones were near the end of their lifecycles, requiring replacements or new batteries.
The preliminary proposed class-action settlement was disclosed on Friday night and requires approval by U.S. District Judge Edward Davila in San Jose, California.
It calls for Apple to pay consumers $25 per iPhone. which may be adjusted up or down depending on how many iPhones are eligible, with a minimum total payout of $310 million.
Apple had attributed the problems mainly to temperature changes, high usage and other issues. The company further said its engineers worked quickly and successfully to address them. Following an initial outcry over slow iPhones, Apple has gone ahead to apologize. And has further lowered the price for replacement batteries to $29 from $79.
The Friday’s settlement covers U.S. owners of the iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, 7, and iPhone 7 Plus or SE that ran the iOS 10.2.1 or a later operating system. It also covers U.S. owners of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus that ran iOS 11.2 or later before Dec. 21, 2017.
The lawyers plan to seek up to $93 million, an amount equal to 30% of $310 million, in legal fees. With an additional up to $1.5 million for expenses.