Apple Charged, Loses Battery Suit

    June 2, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

The makers of the iconic iPod media player chose to think different about customers experiencing battery problems with their iPods.

Unfortunately for the Cupertino-based computer company, those customers decided to think “class action” and sued over batteries that would not hold a charge for the advertised amount of play time, or would not charge at all.

A tentative settlement will have Apple provide $50 vouchers and extended service warranties to as many as 2 million customers who bought older generation iPods through May of 2004.

Eight customers filed the suit in the fall of 2003. They complained the iPod battery was not lasting the product’s lifetime, and that it did not provide 10 hours of continuous playback.

Batteries were failing after 18 months, outside of the device’s one year warranty. Apple then told customers they would have to replace the battery at a cost of $99. With thousands of customers affected by the problem, the lawsuit was filed.

The terms of the settlement provide a $50 voucher good for any Apple product or service outside of iTunes downloads or gift certificates, for anyone eligible who fills out a claim form. Claimants must have a receipt for purchase of their iPod, thus making purchases of iPods through outlets like eBay ineligible for relief.

Further, customers who experienced the battery problem may have the battery or the iPod replaced via a claim through the lawsuit. Apple’s normal one-year service agreement will be extended to two years to cover those affected by the problem.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.