Historic ruling condemns Apple and Samsung for planned obsolescence

Historic ruling condemns Apple and Samsung for planned obsolescence

This is the first sentence in the world that condemns the planned obsolescence and protects consumers "forced" by the tech giants to switch computers to keep up with software.

The Italian Consumer Guarantor has fined Apple 10 million euros and Samsung 5 million for imposing software updates on users that have slowed down or compromised the operation of smartphones. Cupertino received a double sanction also for not having correctly communicated to consumers the deterioration of its lithium batteries. This is the world's first condemnation of planned obsolescence.

“As a result of two complex investigations, explains the Antitrust Authority in a note, the AGCM has verified that the companies of the Apple group and the Samsung group have carried out unfair commercial practices in violation of articles 20, 21, 22 and 24 of the Code, in connection with the release of certain mobile phone firmware updates that caused serious malfunctions and significantly reduced performance, speeding up the replacement process, leading consumers through insistent request to download and also due to the asymmetry of existing information with respect to manufacturers, to install updates on devices that cannot provide adequate support, without providing adequate information or any means to restore the original functionality of the products ".

In particular, Samsung was found guilty of having “persistently proposed, since May 2016, to consumers who had purchased a Note 4 (released in September 2014) to proceed with installing the new Android firmware called Marshmallow prepared for the new model. Note 7, without reporting serious failures due to higher hardware stresses and requiring a high repair cost for out-of-warranty repairs related to such failures. "

However, as for Apple, AGCM states that “it would persistently propose, as of September 2016, to owners of various iPhone 6 models (6 / 6Plus and 6s / 6sPlus, respectively, released in fall 2014 and 2015 ), of installing the new iOS 10 operating system developed for the new iPhone7, without reporting the increasing power demands of the new operating system and the possible inconveniences, such as sudden shutdowns, that such installation could have caused. To limit such problems, Apple released in February 2017, a new update (iOS 10.2.1), however, without warning that its installation could have reduced the response speed and functionality of the devices ".

Original article (in Italian)

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