Italian antitrust authority ‘Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato’ (AGCM) has announced that it is opening an investigation into the alleged ‘planned obsolescence’ practices at Apple and Samsung. Although the agency hasn’t mentioned Apple’s ‘battery-gate’ scandal directly, it is believed to be looking into consumer complaints that Apple intentionally throttles the performance of its older devices in order to make them upgrade to newer hardware.
The news of the Italian inquest is the latest in a long line of legal hassles for the company that includes dozens of class action lawsuits alleging planned obsolescence. The company is also facing an inquiry from at least 4 Republican Congressmen, including the the chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
Ironically enough, Apple’s bitter rival Samsung has also become one of the targets of the investigations, with the Italian authorities also looking at whether South Korean company also follows similar practices as well, although the company has already denied ever slowing down its older devices.
While whispers about tech companies and their planned obsolescence practices have done the rounds of the internet for as long as one can remember, the complaints gained strength last month when Redditor TechFire alleged that the Cupertino giant was slowing down the processors on older iPhone 6s units with degraded batteries, just so the phones can continue to remain functional for a longer period.
After an initial period of silence that only encouraged conspiracy theorists even further, the company apologized for slowing down older iPhones, and announced that it will replace batteries in all older iPhone models at a discounted price of $29 throughout 2018.
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