16 May Suspicion of targeted wear and tear – French judiciary investigates Apple again
In France, the technology company Apple is once again in the sights of the authorities on suspicion of targeted product wear of its smartphones. As the Paris prosecutor’s office confirmed on Monday, investigations against Apple for alleged misleading business practices and so-called planned obsolescence were already launched in December. Consumer advocates hope the proceedings will sanction so-called serialization practices by the U.S. company and prove their “criminal nature.” The accusation against Apple is to link the serial numbers of iPhones and the serial numbers of the individual parts contained therein. This would give the company the opportunity to restrict iPhone repairs by unauthorized repair shops – or to remotely (!) damage smartphones that have not been repaired with original spare parts. In February 2020, France had already fined Apple $25 million for deliberately throttling the performance of iPhones. At the beginning of 2018, the Attorney General’s Office had opened investigations into Apple for targeted product misuse following a complaint by consumer advocates. Apple had admitted to intentionally limiting the performance of older iPhone models – but described this as a measure to extend the life of the devices.