Apple , the two most powerful firms in the smartphone market, have just been fined by Italy in the first decision in the world on programmed obsolescence . As reported by
Apple will have to face a fine of 10 million euros, while Samsung will have to pay 5 million . After two complex investigations, the Guarantor has determined that both companies have carried out “unfair business practices , since they forced to download some updates on their mobile phones that caused serious dysfunctions and significantly reduced their functioning”. With this, they say, they were able to accelerate the process of replacing a terminal with a more recent product .
By persistently proposing the “download of software updates that their phones could not support correctly and without properly informing or providing an effective way to recover the full functionality of the devices to consumers,” the two firms violated articles 20 , 21, 22 and 24 of the Consumer Code .
The first decision in the world that penalizes planned obsolescence
The Cupertino company, which will have to answer before the French courts, has been sanctioned with 10 million because it did not inform the users correctly about the duration of the lithium batteries in their phones and some factors that collaborate in its deterioration. In addition, they detail that Apple persistently suggested to iPhone 6 users to install the iOS 10 operating system , optimized for the iPhone 7, without reporting the problems that would entail, such as high energy demand.
The problem continued when the firm launched an update without notifying consumers that it could reduce the speed and operation of the phones . In addition, they also point out that no measure was offered to solve said inconveniences.
For its part, Samsung has been fined 5 million euros for carrying out this illegal practice since May 2016, when it prompted users of the Galaxy Note 4 to install an optimized firmware for the Note 7 without reporting the problems it could cause. It is the first decision in the world that penalizes planned obsolescence.
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