In an effort to
dodge additional lawsuits reestablish consumer trust, Apple has apologized for purposely slowing down older iPhones with outdated batteries. But if “sorry” isn’t enough for you, the tech company is also offering a $50 discount on replacement batteries for the iPhone 6 and older models.
“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. We know that some of you feel Apple has let you down. We apologize. There’s been a lot of misunderstanding about this issue, so we would like to clarify and let you know about some changes we’re making,” Apple wrote on its website. “First and foremost, 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. Our goal has always been to create products that our customers love, and making iPhones last as long as possible is an important part of that.”
Earlier this month, Apple confirmed the longstanding conspiracy theory that it was intentionally slowing down the performance of older iPhones. Though many customers suspected it was a ploy to get people to purchase upgraded devices, Apple insisted the move was made to eliminate inconveniences and disruptions.
“About a year ago in iOS 10.2.1, we delivered a software update that improves power management during peak workloads to avoid unexpected shutdowns on iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, and iPhone SE,” Apple wrote. “With the update, iOS dynamically manages the maximum performance of some system components when needed to prevent a shutdown. While these changes may go unnoticed, in some cases users may experience longer launch times for apps and other reductions in performance.”
Their explanation makes total sense; however, many people have taken issue with Apple’s lack of transparency.
Shortly after the company confirmed it was, in fact, slowing down CPU frequencies, it was hit with multiple class action lawsuits. One of the suits was filed on behalf of a group of Apple customers who owned iPhone models 5-7.
“iOS updates, plaintiffs claim, were engineered with this very purpose in mind—fraudulently forcing iPhone owners to purchase the latest model offered by Apple,” Atlas Consumer Law wrote in a press release. “Apple's failure to inform consumers these updates would wreak havoc on the phone's performance is being deemed purposeful, and if proven, constitutes the unlawful and decisive withholding of material information.”
To make it up to disappointed customers, Apple will reduce the price of an out-of-warranty iPhone battery replacement from $79 to $29 for anyone with an iPhone 6 or older model. Users can take advantage of the offer beginning in late January through December 2018. Apple said it also has plans to roll out new features that “give users more visibility into the health of their iPhone's battery” so they can determine if their battery’s age is affecting performance.
“At Apple, our customers’ trust means everything to us. We will never stop working to earn and maintain it,” the company wrote. “We are able to do the work we love only because of your faith and support—and we will never forget that or take it for granted.”