Apple will pay $113 million to settle an investigation into its iPhone “throttling” practices which used power management to slow the older iPhone’s performance. Earlier this year, several states launched an investigation to determine whether the practice violated deceptive trade practice laws.
The investigation has now come to an end, and Apple has agreed to pay $113 million to settle the matter, says The Washington Post. As a part of the settlement, Apple has also agreed to be more transparent about similar changes to iOS devices in the future, providing more detail about battery health and power management.
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich provided a statement, which said that he’s committed to preventing tech companies from manipulating consumers.
“Big Tech must stop manipulating consumers and tell them the whole truth about their practices and products. I’m committed to holding these goliath technology companies to account if they conceal the truth from their users.”
The investigation involved 34 states and the District of Columbia. The issue stems from a “performance management system” Apple included in iOS 10.2.1 with no mention of the feature in the updates release notes. In a statement a month later, Apple mentioned only “improvements” that resulted in significantly fewer unexpected iPhone shutdowns.
The iPhone maker only revealed what the “improvements” consisted of when it was discovered that some iPhone 6s and iPhone 7 devices scored lower on benchmarks after installing the iOS updates.
The performance management system has been disabled by default since iOS 11.3 and is only enabled if the device suffers an unexpected shutdown. The feature can also be manually toggled by users.
Once the throttling was discovered, Apple apologized and offered a $29 battery replacement program for the older iPhones. A new battery fixes the issue that led to device shutdowns.