Apple to Pay $53 Million to Settle iPhone, iPod Touch Warranty Suit

 Apple has agreed to pay $53 million to settle a class-action suit in connection with warranties covering its iPhone and iPod touch devices.


Originally filed in 2010, the lawsuit claimed Apple had unfairly denied warranty coverage to some customers for their Apple devices due to water damage. The settlement, which still requires the court’s approval, will be held in a fund to be distributed among the 153,000 members of the class-action suit, according to documents filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

According to earlier warranty policy, Apple had installed a Liquid Submersion Indicator (LSI), made from a water contact indicator tape manufactured by 3M, on the devices. Color changes in the indicator from white to pink or red could be viewed externally. The Liquid Damage Policy for the iPhone was changed by Apple around November 2009; the policy continued for the iPod touch until May 2010.

Apple held that a red or pink external LSI was sufficient proof that the device had been damaged by liquid, hence making the warranty void in line with provisions that excluded coverage, for example, for “liquid spill or submersion” or “abuse.”

The plaintiffs contended that the change of color on the LSIs merely indicated that device may have been exposed to liquid, but did not mean that it was damaged by exposure to liquid or that the exposure caused the specific malfunction in the iPhone and iPod that customers were trying to repair or replace under warranty.

3M, which made the indicators, later confirms that water damage is not the only reason that cause color change on the LSLs, heat could also cause color change.

The settlement still requires court’s approval. Customers with warranty claims denied prior to June 2010 (iPod touch) or December 31st, 2009 could get a settlement fee of as much as $300 depending on the device owned and how many claims are filed. Up to 30 percent of the proceeds may be awarded as attorneys’ fees and reimbursement of litigation expenses.

A few months ago, Chinese customers accused Apple of repairing only broken or otherwise faulty parts within its products, but providing new replacements in other countries. The flap made Apple revise its warranty policy and Apple CEO Tim Cook apologized for Apple’s previous action.

However if you accidently deleted important photos, messages, videos and other data from iPhone and look for data recovery solutions, Apple would not help at all. You’d better seek help from third party software, for instance, iPhone Data Recovery tool.

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