“Big Tech must stop manipulating consumers and tell them the whole truth about their practices and products,” Arizona Attorney General Mark Bernovich, who helped lead the investigation, said in a statement. “I commit to holding these companies accountable for goliath technology if they hide the truth from their consumers.” Apple will pay Arizona $ 5 million in particular, and the rest will be divided among the other states. The Washington Post reported the news earlier.
In court statements, Apple said it agreed to the agreement to allow the investigation, but added that “nothing contained herein may be accepted or construed as an admission or concession to a breach of a law, rule or regulation or any any other factual or legitimate matter, or any liability or wrongdoing that Apple expressly denies. ”
“No part of this decision, including its statements and commitments, constitutes evidence of any liability, fault or wrongdoing on the part of Apple,” the company said in a statement.
The news is the latest example of how big technology is increasingly controlled by regulators and legislators. Although the “batterygate” saga is known to have occurred before major technology scandals such asdata privacy scandal and political elections, the event was a turning point for the iPhone maker.
For years Applebut conspiracy theories continued, arguing that the technology giant had made phones less usable to encourage people to upgrade – a practice called planned obsolescence. When Apple admitted to slowing down the iPhone – albeit for a different reason, it said – the news caught the attention of the world.
“Our goal is to provide the best customer experience that includes overall performance and extended life for their devices,” Apple said in an initial statement on December 20, 2017.. It is explained that when older batteries cannot supply enough power, when phones try to perform more complex tasks, such as playing a video game, this slows down the phone’s chips to a level where the battery can perform.
Critics called a foul, and a little over a week later, Apple officially apologized, insisting it was acting in the best interests of the customer. It also offers a $ 29 battery replacement for a limited time to anyone who asks, instead of charging the typical $ 79. And added features to its iOS software that better explain how the iPhone’s batteries work and give the iPhone people’s choice.
“We have never done and would never do anything to deliberately shorten the life of any Apple product or worsen the user experience to stimulate customer upgrades. Our goal has always been to create products that our customers love, and to make the iPhone last as long as possible is an important part of that, “Apple. “We know some of you think Apple has let you down. We apologize.”
Still, lawsuits and investigations followed. In March this year, Appleto settle a class action lawsuit in which Apple agreed to pay customers $ 25 for an iPhone, with a minimum payout of $ 310 million. It covers current and former iPhone owners in the US who have had an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus or SE with iOS 12.2.1 or later. It also covers iPhone 7 and 7 Plus with iOS 11.2 or later before December 21, 2017.
“The agreement provides significant relief to Apple users and will continue to help ensure that customers are fully informed when asked to update their products,” said Joseph Kochet, co-founder of the plaintiffs, in a statement at the time.
Apple has denied any wrongdoing.