Apple and Samsung have been fined in Italy for the “planned obsolescence” of their smartphones. Both have been asked to pay 5 million Euros ($5.7 million) each following complaints they used software updates to slow down their mobile phones.
Apple has been asked to pay an additional 5 million euro fine for not providing clients clear information about how to maintain or eventually replace handset batteries.
What this case is about
The investigation done by the anti-trust agency watchdog found that certain smartphone software updates had a negative effect on the performance of older devices. The slowing encourages the purchase of new phones so that these companies can make higher profits.
Such practices have been suspected for a long time by forums on Reddit which share information on device performance after several tests, it is the first time that a government authority has taken its decision in favour of the customers.
The Investigation also found Samsung and Apple to be involved in misleading commercials. In a statement, Watchdog said
“Apple and Samsung implemented dishonest commercial practices” and that operating system updates “caused serious malfunctions and significantly reduced performance, thus accelerating phones’ substitution”.
Apple had acknowledged last year that iPhone software update had the adverse effect on batteries, but denied it had ever done anything to intentionally shorten the life of a product.
Samsung’s software updates for its phones have not been questioned previously.
How Samsung and Apple have responded
A Samsung spokesperson said that the company is disappointed by this decision and intends to solve the confusions as quickly as possible. the fine:
“Samsung did not issue any software update that reduced the Galaxy Note 4’s performance. In contrast, Samsung has always released software updates enabling our customers to have the best experience possible.”
Apple has not responded to this till now.
This is not the only investigation working towards this issue, another similar investigation is also being carried out in France. Also, a class action lawsuit has been filed for the same in California.
Have you faced any such issues after upgrading your phones? Share your experiences with us in the comments section.