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The Annoying Issue That Could See Apple Sued

Apple Inc has defrauded iPhone users by slowing devices without warning to compensate for poor battery performance, according to eight lawsuits filed in various federal courts in the week since the company opened up about the year-old software change.

The tweak may have led iPhone owners to misguided attempts to resolve issues over the last year, the lawsuits contend.

All the lawsuits - filed in US District Courts in California, New York and Illinois - seek class-action to represent potentially millions of iPhone owners nationwide.

Apple did not respond to an email seeking comment on the filings.

The company acknowledged last week for the first time in detail that operating system updates released since "last year" for the iPhone 6, iPhone 6s, iPhone SE and iPhone 7 included a feature "to smooth out" power supply from batteries that are cold, old or low on charge.

Phones without the adjustment would shut down abruptly because of a precaution designed to prevent components from getting fried, Apple said.

One of the lawsuits, filed Thursday in San Francisco, said that "the batteries' inability to handle the demand created by processor speeds" without the software patch was a defect.

The problem now seen is that users over the last year could have blamed an aging computer processor for app crashes and sluggish performance - and chose to buy a new phone - when the true cause may have been a weak battery that could have been replaced for a fraction of the cost, some of the lawsuits state.

The lawsuits seek unspecified damages in addition to, in some cases, reimbursement. A couple of the complaints seek court orders barring Apple from throttling iPhone computer speeds or requiring notification in future instances.

AAP

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