Apple has been fined 25 million euros ($27m) for slowing down older iPhone models without giving any clarity to its consumers.
The fine was imposed by France's competition and fraud watchdog, The Directorate General for Competition, Consumption and the Suppression of Fraud (DGCCRF) on the grounds that Apple did not inform users that iOS updates released for older iPhones could slow down their devices.
The report by DGCCRF comes in the aftermath of an earlier confirmation by Apple where the Cupertino-based company admitted the fact that it does slow down older iPhones, but only to "prolong the life" of the devices.
The French watchdog in a press release highlighted that iPhone users were not "informed that hat the iOS operating system (10.2.1 and 11.2) they were installing were likely to lead to a slowing down the operation of their device."
The regulator also stated that these updates, released in 2017, included a "dynamic power management system that could, under certain conditions and conditions, especially when the batteries were old, slow down the operation of the iPhone 6, SE and 7 models. Unable to return to the previous version of the operating system, many consumers would have been forced to change their battery or even buy a new phone."
Why does Apple slow down older iPhone models?
In an earlier report in 2017, Apple confirmed that Lithium-ion batteries, used in all smartphones including iPhones, are inherently incapable of delivering peak current demands in cold conditions and can only hold a lower battery charge as they age over time. Slowing the device was a result of a power management system Apple added in iOS to prevent frequent shutting down of iPhones and to protect its electronic components.
Which older iPhone models are getting affected by Apple's updates?
Apple has implemented this practice on several iPhones. According to the DGCCRF report, these older iPhone models are prone to getting slower due to the updates:
Apple, however, has accepted an agreement with the regulator to pay the fine of 25 million euros and also publish a press release on its French-language website for one month.