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Apple’s ‘batterygate’ ends with a $65 payday for iPhone users

In the grand scheme of things, Batterygate may be just a blip on Apple’s radar, a $500 million hiccup for a company worth trillions.

Iphone battery

Apple users, we did it! Get ready to cash in on a long-awaited resolution. After a tumultuous legal battle, Apple has agreed to compensate its users with a cool $65 each as part of a settlement for a 2018 class-action lawsuit.

The lawsuit accused Apple of intentionally slowing down iPhones to nudge consumers into upgrading to newer models. Sneaky, right?

In March 2020, Apple agreed to shell out a whopping $500 million to settle the lawsuit. However, the settlement hit a roadblock when two iPhone owners appealed against certain terms of the agreement. The appeal made its way to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, but alas, it was denied.

This legal saga has been a rollercoaster ride spanning five long years, with approximately three million claims filed since the lawsuit’s inception. Apple finally admitted in 2017 that they did indeed slow down the iOS software on older iPhones.

Their justification? It was all to prevent older batteries from randomly shutting off devices. Hmm, sounds fishy, doesn’t it? Apple, of course, denied any ulterior motives for pushing customers to buy new batteries or upgrade to the latest iPhone.

But the plot thickens.

A smartphone with a mobile phone case is being used to access multimedia and communicate electronically.
Image: KnowTechie

Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP, the law firm representing the iPhone claimants, announced a major victory. The 9th circuit rejected Apple’s attempt to dismiss the case, allowing the litigation to proceed.

The claims covered violations of various laws, including the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, California’s Computer Data Access and Fraud Act, California’s Unfair Competition Law, and Trespass to Chattels.

“The settlement is the result of years of investigation and hotly contested litigation,” Mark C. Molumphy, a partner at Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP, said in a press release. “We are extremely proud that this deal has been approved, and following the Ninth Circuit’s order, we can finally provide immediate cash payments to impacted Apple customers,” he added.

In a court filing back in 2019, Apple argued that lithium-ion batteries naturally deteriorate over time, becoming less effective.

Okay, that is a fair point, but here’s the kicker: they conveniently forgot to inform users about the iOS updates that allegedly slowed down their phones. Users only discovered the issue when their iPhones started shutting down unexpectedly, even with 30% battery life remaining.

Now, here’s the twist. Apple agreed to pay the claimants a hefty sum between $310 million and $500 million. The exact payout for each participant in the class-action lawsuit depends on the number of approved claims.

If you owned any of these iPhones and filed a claim, cash is coming your way

Curious about which iPhones were affected? The list includes the iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, and SE running on iOS 10.2.1 systems before December 21, 2017.

Oh, and let’s not forget the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus running on iOS 11.2 or later before that date. If you own one of these models, you might be in for a nice surprise.

iPhone ModeliOS VersionAffected Before
iPhone 6iOS 10.2.1December 21, 2017
iPhone 6 PlusiOS 10.2.1December 21, 2017
iPhone 6s PlusiOS 10.2.1December 21, 2017
iPhone SEiOS 10.2.1December 21, 2017
iPhone 7iOS 11.2 or laterDecember 21, 2017
iPhone 7 PlusiOS 11.2 or laterDecember 21, 2017

Can you still file the $65 ‘batterygate’ claim?

Unfortunately, no. The claims submission period ended on October 6, 2020.

In the grand scheme of things, Batterygate may be just a blip on Apple’s radar, a $500 million hiccup for a company worth trillions.

But it’s a blip that has left a lasting impact. It’s a story of corporate missteps, consumer outrage, and, ultimately, accountability. It’s a reminder that even tech giants aren’t invincible to the demands of transparency and honesty.

So, if you’re clutching one of the affected iPhones, don’t expect a windfall. The claims window has sadly closed. But take solace in the fact that your slower iPhone played a part in a larger narrative.

It’s a narrative that has pushed Apple and other tech companies to be more upfront about their practices. And if you’re holding one of the newer iPhones, relish in the knowledge that your device’s battery life is a testament to lessons learned the hard way.

And to those still waiting for their $65 payout from the lawsuit, remember – every little bit counts in the pursuit of the latest iPhone. After all, the iPhone 15 Pro isn’t going to pay for itself, is it?

Have any thoughts on this? Drop us a line below in the comments, or carry the discussion to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Kevin is KnowTechie's founder and executive editor. With over 15 years of blogging experience in the tech industry, Kevin has transformed what was once a passion project into a full-blown tech news publication. Shoot him an email at or find him on Mastodon or Post.

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