The Korea Herald


Seoul high court sides with iPhone owners against Apple over ‘batterygate’

By Kim Arin

Published : Dec. 6, 2023 - 18:43

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(Yonhap) (Yonhap)

The high court in Seoul on Wednesday ruled against Apple in a damages suit filed by consumers here over allegations the US tech giant purposefully degraded the performance of older iPhones in a controversy that came to be known as “batterygate.”

The Seoul high court on this day called on Apple to pay 70,000 won ($53) each to seven iPhone owners who were part of the lawsuit that accused the company of slowing down the devices through software updates. The owners then alleged that the company slowed down the performance of iPhones to get them to purchase newer models.

The court said that Apple had an obligation to notify consumers of the performance-limiting update, and not doing so denied them the choice of whether to install it or not.

The iPhone owners sued Apple for damages in 2018, after the company rolled out updates that included features that prevented devices from being powered down.

More than 62,000 owners joined the lawsuit initially, but only seven of them decided to go through the long trial process.

The lower court had also ruled in favor of the iPhone owners, stating that the updated features tweaked the performance of the devices in a way that caused inconvenience to its users.