Apple is so wrong if it believes that it would refuse to fix devices of its customers and the customers would not do something. After repeated reports of Apple customers unable to get their devices fixed, the consumer watchdog of Australia began legal action against the Cupertino-based iPhone maker. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) accused the tech giant of refusing to repair iPhones and iPads that were previously repaired by third parties.
ACCC accuses Apple of declining to repair phones
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission alleges that the tech giant made “false, misleading, or deceptive representations about consumers’ rights under Australian law.” The case comes after repeated complaints that users were “routinely refused” repairs after an error – Error 53 – disabled their devices.
The Cupertino-based iPhone making giant was not immediately available to respond to our request for comment. The ACCC started an investigation after users complained about the popular ‘Error 53’ that disabled the devices of some users after they downloaded an update to their operating system. Previously, many of those users had their iPhones or iPads fixed by a third party instead of an official Apple repairer. Most often the users got the screen of their devices replaced by the third parties, which led to the Error 53 after the iOS 9 update.
The ACCC said the tech giant declined to fix the devices in many cases even when the repair was unrelated to the fault. The proceedings against the Silicon Valley giant were brought on behalf of 275 consumers.
Rod Sims, the ACCC Chairman said, “Consumer guarantee rights under the Australian Consumer Law exist independently of any manufacturer’s warranty and are not extinguished simply because a consumer has goods repaired by a third party.”
ACCC to fine Apple around £667,000
The Chairman added, “Denying a consumer their consumer guarantee rights simply because they had chosen a third party repairer not only impacts those consumers but can dissuade other customers from making informed choices about their repair options including where they may be offered at lower cost than the manufacturer.”
Further, he further reminded businesses that the consumer rights extended to all software or software updates loaded on to those devices by third-parties.
The breach of Australian Consumer Law can lead to fines of around A$1.1m (£667,000). The tech company apologized over similar claims in February and issued a fix for error 53. The error took place when an Apple device failed a standard security test which was designed to make sure that the Touch ID fingerprint scanner was working correctly, said the tech company.