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Technology

Apple to pay up to $500 million over intentionally slowing older iPhones

Apple Batterygate Settlement
A person holds an iPhone 6, left, and an iPhone 7 at an Apple store in 2016. Apple is settling a class-action suit involving iPhone 6, 6S, 7 and SE models.
(Kiichiro Sato / Associated Press)

A slew of iPhone owners could get $25 each from Apple Inc. after the company agreed to pay up to $500 million to settle claims over intentionally slowing down older phones to preserve older batteries.

Apple and lawyers representing iPhone consumers agreed to a deal stemming from Apple’s 2017 admission that it was slowing down phone performance in older models to avoid unexpected shutdowns related to battery fatigue.

That admission led to Apple offering discounted battery replacements at $29, but many people claimed they had already spent hundreds of dollars to buy new phones because Apple hadn’t revealed the cause of the problem. If they had known they could just buy new batteries, they might not have bought new phones, some consumers in the case said.

Apple did not admit wrongdoing. As part of the settlement, the company agreed to pay $310 million to $500 million, including about $93 million to lawyers representing consumers.

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IPhone users who were named in the class-action lawsuit will get up to $3,500 each. The rest of the settlement money will be distributed to owners of iPhone 6, 6S, 7 and SE models who meet eligibility requirements related to the operating system they had running.

They must file claims to get the award. If too many people file, the $25 amount could shrink.

The settlement still needs approval from a federal judge in San Jose.


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