Last year, Apple responded to claims that it was slowing down iPhones on purpose to get customers to buy newer models. The company was accused of sending out updates that repressed the processor which resulted in a decline in performance. Apple acknowledged that it was doing that but for entirely different reasons. Nevertheless, it got hit by lawsuits and investigations by consumer protection bodies. One of such consumer watchdog in Italy has now fined the company for this practice which is also called planned obsolescence.
Apple explained back then that it did this so that devices with older, degraded batteries could be prevented from shutting down accidentally. That can happen when there’s a spike in the power requirement after the processor comes under heavy load. Sometimes, these batteries can’t handle that spike and the device shuts down abruptly. The company said that the devices were repressed by this functionality when needed to prevent unexpected shutdowns during a spike. However, the company allowed users to turn this off through a later update.
Nonetheless, that hasn’t appeased Italy’s watchdog. They have fined Apple 10 million euros for “accelerating the process of replacing” devices by sending updates that “caused serious dysfunctions and reduced performance significantly.” Apple was also fined for not providing users with clear information about how to maintain and eventually replace the batteries on their smartphones.
The company has not yet commented on this.