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iPhone customer is upset with Apple over the lack of a user-replaceable battery

The iPhone has been parading through news headlines ever since its early January unveil at MacWorld 2007. When the bulk of the tech press was roaming around Las Vegas totally underwhelmed by the Consumer Electronics Show, Apple was spilling the beans on a product that had been long rumored.

During its unveil, Apple went over the bulk of the iPhone's features and reporters were quick to point out its deficiencies. A few minuses that were harped upon with regards to the iPhone included its lack of a physical keyboard and its sealed battery.

The lack of a physical keyboard has been overcome by many iPhones users who have become accustomed to the on-screen alternative, but many still harp on the lack of a user-replaceable battery.

Apple claims that the iPhone's battery is good for 400 charge/discharge cycles. The design specifications for the iPhone note that the battery will retain 80 percent of its charge after 400 cycles have been exhausted.

For those that weren't satisfied with 400 charge cycles or experience greatly diminished battery life, Apple announced its $85.95 battery replacement program. Under the program, customers would pay $79 plus $6.95 shipping in the event of an iPhone battery failure. And considering that users would be without an iPhone a week or more for repairs, Apple also announced that it would rent an iPhone ($29) to those who couldn't be without a phone.

iPhone users now have a cheaper option with AppleCare coverage. AppleCare extends the iPhone's warranty from one year to two years and is available for $69.

One iPhone customer wasn't happy at all with the iPhone's battery life or the two alternatives to replacing a defective battery and filed a class-action lawsuit against Apple as a result. In the suit, Jose Trujillo claims that:

Unknown to the Plaintiff, and undisclosed to the public, prior to purchase, the iPhone is a sealed unit with its battery soldered on the inside of the device so that it cannot be changed by the owner.

The suit goes on state:

The battery enclosed in the iPhone can only be charged approximately 300 times before it will be in need of replacement, necessitating a new battery annually for owners of the iPhone.

To the first point; the fact that the battery was not replaceable was disclosed to the public from the very beginning and is nothing new. Secondly, the suit claims that the iPhone battery can only be charged for 300 times before it needs replacement. Apple clearly states that the iPhone’s battery will retain 80 percent capacity even after its design specifications of 400 cycles.

The full text of the complaint can be viewed at Gizmodo, but it's doubtful that the suit will gain much traction in court.



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Lawyers
By Dactyl on 7/27/2007 9:55:40 PM , Rating: -1
To the first point; the fact that the battery was not replaceable was disclosed to the public from the very beginning and is nothing new.

You mean a trial lawyer in search of a big class action against Apple might not be completely honest/might not have done all of his homework?

Lawyers lie; it's what they do. If he admitted that Apple told everyone ahead of time, he looks like an idiot. So instead, he lies.

Secondly, the suit claims that the iPhone battery can only be charged for 300 times before it needs replacement. Apple clearly states that the iPhone’s battery will retain 80 percent capacity even after its design specifications of 400 cycles.

"needs replacement" is a subjective judgment. If I need at least 95% battery capacity for my job, maybe after 300 cycles, it really does need to be replaced. Of course, I'm betting that's not Mr. Trujillo's situation.

As much as I hate to say anything nice about Apple, the iPhone looks like a decent (but expensive) product, and its customers don't have good reason to sue Apple--yet. If some new information comes to light that suggests Apple's phone is deficient, such a lawsuit might be proper.

This lawyer, Larry D. Drury, has apparently done a lot of class action cases in the past. He probably knows he can't win this, and is just doing it to get his name in the news. He has apparently sought public office in the past (he wanted to be elected as a judge), which is consistent with having megalomaniacal, attention-whore tendencies.

This is part of his statement as to why he should be elected as judge (yes, in some parts of the country, they elect judges--go figure):

quote:
I have litigated as class action counsel against Intel, Microsoft, America On Line, Commonwealth Edison, City of Chicago, County of Lake, The Circuit Court of Cook County, Cook County Sheriff’s Office, Lake County Assessor, Clerk of the Circuit Court of Lake County, Illinois, Chicago Medical School, LaSalle Bank, Continental Bank, Irving Bank & Trust, Ameritech, Sonic Communications, Ford Motor Co., General Motors and Arista Records (Milli Vanilli), et al. on a state or nation wide class basis since 1976. I am usually lead counsel or class counsel in the litigation, and am currently one of the lead counsel in the Commonwealth Edison power outage cases as I was in America On Line and In Re Sonic Communications, which was one of the first nation wide telephone "slamming" class actions. Steinberg vs. Chicago Medical School, 69 Ill.2d 320, 41 Ill.App.3d 804, was one of the first cases under the class action statute and is still a leading case in Illinois on contracts and admission practices of educational institutions.


Also, he likes puppies, children, and apple pie (no pun intended):

quote:
Over the years, I have also been a Level I and II hearing officer with the Illinois State Board of Education, Special Education and Teacher Dismissal. I enjoyed the position as it allowed me to adjudicate issues concerning children, young adults and those who devote their lives to education.


http://www.dcba.org/brief/marissue/2000/art60300.h...




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