Apple fined 25 million euros for voluntarily restraining iPhone models


The prosecution had opened on January 5, 2018 a preliminary investigation for "planned obsolescence".

The investigation concluded that "deceptive marketing practices by omission". Apple was fined 25 million euros, the competition authority (DGCCRF) announced on Friday February 7. "Following an investigation by the Directorate General for Competition, Consumption and the Suppression of Fraud (DGCCRF) and after the agreement of the public prosecutor of Paris, the Apple group agreed to pay a fine of 25 million euros in a criminal transaction ", welcomes the body in a press release.

The prosecution had opened on January 5, 2018 a preliminary investigation for "planned obsolescence" (finally not retained at the end of the investigations) at the request of the association Halte à l'obsolescence programmée (Hop), which accused the American technology giant to deliberately slow down its old smartphone models to speed up their replacement.

On December 21, 2017, the American group, which markets each year a new model of its flagship phone, had recognized that it voluntarily restrained the performance of the phone after a certain time in order "to extend the service life" of it.

A decision made, he said, due to the use of lithium-ion batteries which have more difficulty responding to heavy demands by the phone user as they age.

The investigation, which was entrusted to the DGCCRF, "showed that iPhone owners had not been informed that the iOS operating system updates (10.2.1 and 11.2) that they were installing could lead to a slowdown in the functioning of their device", specifies the press release.

"We are happy with this outcome with the DGCCRF, Apple responded in a statement. It has always been our goal to create safe products that are valued by our customers and making the iPhone last as long as possible is an important part of it. "

"This is a historic first victory against scandalous ready-to-throw practices, both for consumers and for the environment", reacted in their turn in a press release Laetitia Vasseur and Samuel Sauvage, the co-founders of the Hop association, which relied on nearly 15,000 testimonies to launch its appeal.

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