Last year Apple was investigated and subsequently forced to pay 10 million euros in Italy due to a fine imposed by the Italian Competition Authority . The reason for this fine was the controversial performance management that the company introduced on older iPhones with iOS 10.2.1. This action was considered as a practice of programmed obsolescence.
In the last few hours we have learned that the company was also forced to report on its Italian website the issue of programmed obsolescence on its devices. This was detected and published by the user setteBIT on Twitter.
Apple statement on its Italian website about planned obsolescence
The investigation by the Italian antitrust regulator forced Apple to publish a consumer protection notice on its website. The notice can be read at the bottom of the company’s homepage in Italy. The translated text is as follows:
“Apple, Apple Distribution International, Apple Italy and Apple Retail Italy have led consumers in possession of iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus to install the iOS 10 operating system and subsequent upgrades without providing adequate information on the impact of that choice on the performance of the phones and without offering (in a timely manner) any method to restore the original functionality of the devices in the event of a proven decrease in performance after the upgrade (such as degradation or reasonably priced battery replacement).
This practice was assessed as incorrect in accordance with Articles 20, 21, 22 and 24 of the Italian Consumer Code Legislative Decree No 206 by the Italian Competition Authority.
The Authority has ordered the publication of this amending statement in accordance with Article 27, paragraph 8 of the Consumer Code.
Did Apple take on the programmed obsolescence of its devices?
Although Apple has been forced to issue this statement on its Italian website, the truth is that the company has not finished publicly acknowledging that its slowing down practices on the iPhone 6 and 6s are due to something deliberate like programmed obsolescence.
The reason why Apple, according to the company itself, carried out these software slow-downs was due to an intention to protect the battery of older devices . Due to the manufacturing components of these, the devices were not able to perform in the same way as the newer devices.
To compensate for this, Apple launched a battery replacement program worldwide at a reasonable price that allowed users to counteract the effects of slowdowns. The company also launched new battery performance management features in iOS 11.3 . One of the highlights was a battery health check from Settings> Battery .