Apple slapped with €10 million fine for slowing down phones; Samsung fined €5 million

Remember the iPhone throttling controversy? It’s back, and this time Apple has been slapped with a total of €10 million fine by the Italian government, according to Reuters. This is in addition to the investigations and lawsuits it is facing in the US. Italy’s anti-trust watchdog on Wednesday handed a €5 million fine to both Apple and Samsung, following complaints by consumer groups, who claimed that both companies were using software updates to intentionally slow down older devices. Apple was made to cough up an additional €5 million on the pretext that it failed to give clients clear information about how to maintain or eventually replace handset batteries.

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This entire episode began when a Reddit thread found evidence that iOS 10.2.1 was slowing older iPhones. Then one thing lead to another and finally Apple had to acknowledge the fact that it did try to throttle older models. But Apple did provide an explanation at the time saying that it did so to prevent a battery issue, due to which older devices were getting shut down unexpectedly. Subsequently, they offered discounted battery replacements and also allowed users to manually switch off iPhone throttling. People still speculated that it was being done to indirectly force consumers into buying the latest model.

A statement given to Reuters by the anti-trust body said that some Apple and Samsung firmware updates “had caused serious dysfunctions and reduced performance significantly, thereby accelerating the process of replacing them.” While adding that the two firms did not provided clients with adequate information about the impact of the new software “or any means of restoring the original functionality of the products.”