Apple faces investigation in France over accusation of planned obsolescence
Prosecutors are now looking into claims that Apple intentionally causes its devices to become obsolete to compel users to purchase new ones
The Paris Prosecutor’s Office is investigating Apple’s planned obsolescence of products after receiving a complaint from NGO Halte a L’Obsolescence Programmee (HOP), in December 2022.
HOP accuses the US company of using deceptive marketing practices and programmed obsolescence of its products. HOP claims that company can detect unauthorized repairs that use unofficial parts and can remotely reduce repaired phones’ performance.
The accusations are focused on the “serialization” practice. In such a serialization practice, spare parts such as microchips or speakers are linked with specific iPhone generations through serial numbers, making it arduous for third-party repairers to utilize generic parts. As company discontinues older models by phasing out older iPhone models, the associated spare parts become increasingly scarce, and this puts pressure on customers to upgrade to newer models. So, the Paris prosecutor is now looking into claims that Apple intentionally causes its devices to become obsolete to compel users to purchase new ones.
Previously, Apple has been fined millions of dollars in France and Italy for intentionally slowing down older iPhones through mandatory operating system upgrades.
In South Korea, a lawsuit against Apple over planned obsolescence was dismissed, with the court ruling against 9,800 iPhone users who had filed a lawsuit against the Apple. The “battery-gate” scandal, which started in 2017, involved claims that company purposefully lowered the performance of certain iPhone models to extend battery life.