Italy Launches Investigations Into “Batterygate”….. South Korean Group Sues Apple

Investigations into Apple slowing down iPhones that have wonky batteries have spread to Italy and South Korea. In the case of the former, also being investigated is Samsung surprisingly. Here’s the details from Reuters:

 Italy’s antitrust body said on Thursday it had opened a probe into allegations that Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd used software updates to slow their mobile phones and push clients into buying new handsets.

The watchdog said in a statement that the two companies had not told clients that the updates might have a negative impact on the performance of their phones.

It said the U.S. and South Korean firms might have infringed four separate articles of the national consumers’ code. If found guilty, the two companies risk multi-million euro fines.

This is the first time Samsung has been dragged into “Batterygate”. It will be interesting to see if Samsung is subject to the same level of scrutiny that Apple has been under for the last few weeks. Keep an eye on this one. Meanwhile in South Korea, a consumer group has filed a criminal complaint against Apple. Details again from Reuters:

The South Korean advocacy group, Citizens United for Consumer Sovereignty, in its complaint submitted on Thursday accused Apple of destruction of property and fraud.

“For the sake of its loyal fans, Apple has to take responsibility over the slowing iPhones,” Park Soon-jang, an official at the advocacy group told Reuters by phone on Friday.

The group also represents about 120 plaintiffs in a civil damage suit against Apple filed earlier this month.

The Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office declined to comment when asked if it would launch an investigation into Apple following the complaint from the consumer group.

Well, that’s not good. Seeing as that’s Samsung’s back yard, you can’t be surprised that this is happening. This will also be worth keeping an eye on.

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