iPhone 4 Reception Problem: Multiple Class-Action Lawsuits Filed Against Apple
At least three class-action lawsuits have been filed against Apple over the iPhone 4 reception problem in the past couple of days. These lawsuits have been filed in the US District Courts in California, Maryland and Texas.
The plaintiffs have accused Apple on ten counts that include charges like unfair business practices, defect in design, intentional misrepresentation, and violation of the Federal Communications Act.
In the complaint, the plaintiffs have argued that Apple was aware of the inherent defects in the new iPhone and that these defects were maliciously concealed from consumers. The lawsuits have sought for damages from Apple besides requesting the court to order an injunction on the company to "undertake an informational campaign" to educate consumers about the company's "wrongfulness". The lawsuit filed in California reads:
"The iPhone 4 manifests design and manufacturing defects that were known to Defendants before it was released which were not disclosed to consumers, namely, a connection problem caused by the iPhone 4's antenna configuration that makes it difficult or impossible to maintain a connection to AT&T's network.
Defendants have failed to provide customer support to assist iPhone 4 customers regarding this defect. Consumers are left with three options: hold their phones in an awkward or unnatural manner, return their phones and pay 10% 'restocking fee,' or purchase Apple's own 'bumper' cases for their phones, costing $29.99 in addition to the premium they have already paid for the phones themselves, which may somewhat ameliorate the iPhone 4's defects."
The class action lawsuit has also referred to the much publicized email purportedly sent by Steve Jobs to a customer last week where the Apple CEO had written that the iPhone's signal reception was a "non-issue" and that the user was holding his phone the wrong way. Incidentally, the lawsuit also mentions AT&T as one of the violators. The plaintiffs allege that Ma Bell helped Apple in the design, manufacture and marketing of the new iPhone.
Apple had released a public statement earlier today to confirm that the iPhone 4 reception problem is due to incorrect display of the signal strength, which will be fixed with an iPhone software update.
Apple should have probably waited before telling customers that 'it was a fact of life for any wireless device' and advising users to avoid holding it in the lower left corner or using a case. It has made matters worse as users ended felt let down by Apple's ignorance and arrogance towards their issue, which they could replicate quite easily.
Do you think these lawsuits are justified or as usual opportunistic?
[via Apple Insider]
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