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Apple Settles Antennagate Class-Action Lawsuit 130

An anonymous reader writes "A preliminary settlement has been reached in the class-action lawsuit brought against Apple in June 2010 over the 'Antennagate' fiasco. Ira Rothken, co-lead counsel for the case, says there are 21 million people entitled to either $15 or a free bumper. 'The settlement comes from 18 separate lawsuits that were consolidated into one. All share the claim that Apple was "misrepresenting and concealing material information in the marketing, advertising, sale, and servicing of its iPhone 4 — particularly as it relates to the quality of the mobile phone antenna and reception and related software." The settlement has its own Web site, www.iPhone4Settlement.com, which will be up in the coming weeks (the site doesn't go anywhere right now). There, customers will be able to get information about the settlement and how to make a claim. As part of the arrangement, e-mails will also be sent alerting original buyers to the settlement before April 30, 2012. The claims period is then open for 120 days.'"
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Apple Settles Antennagate Class-Action Lawsuit

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  • by newcastlejon ( 1483695 ) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @12:27PM (#39085901)

    "misrepresenting and concealing material information in the marketing, advertising, sale, and servicing of its iPhone 4 — particularly as it relates to the quality of the mobile phone antenna and reception and related software."

    So naturally, the people who actually had the problem are entitled to fifteen (count 'em!) dollars.

    Are there any figures for the people who got a full refund for a phone that was - according to some, anyway - not fit for purpose?

  • by jo_ham ( 604554 ) <joham999@ g m a il.com> on Saturday February 18, 2012 @12:53PM (#39086039)

    It wasn't even that bad of a design to begin with. Under all the conditions where an internal antenna would work acceptably (ie, when the phone was being held in any possible position) the 4's antenna also worked fine. It was only in marginal conditions where internal antennas, like the one in the 3GS, would not receive a signal in the first place that the detuning showed up.

    The design should have figured both left and right handed use from the start, certainly, but it was nowhere near as bad as many were making it out to be.

    That said, the bumper cures the issue in those edge cases.

  • by interval1066 ( 668936 ) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @03:45PM (#39087169) Homepage Journal

    But instead Apple lied.

    Yes. But you're making it as if Apple were Monsanto lying about 3 headed babies because their mothers ate corn in the 3rd trimester. Lets scale this down to what it is; a defective consumer product. That's it. Its not a "gate." Not even a Keating 3. Its a 3 oz candy bar with wrapping saying its 5, at best. We both have bigger issues in our lives, at least I do.

  • by theNAM666 ( 179776 ) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @04:18PM (#39087387)

    Actually, no, no, no no no.

    With the existing precident, you are almost guaranteed to win in any small claims venue. Your costs range from free to about $75. You can represent yourself.

    On the other hand, Apple, as a corporation, is going to have to send a lawyer. At $350/hr or so, they're going to spend at least $5000 on the case -- time, travel, expenses (hotel etc).

    If you sue them for $500 or less, it simply makes sense to settle. And in fact, I've only seen Apple not settle once-- when a law student at Berkeley did them the convenience of (intentionally) suing them in Cupertino over a defective laptop.

    Guess what? He still won. Small claims litigation is not massive class action. It has restricted, common sense rules and proceeds by a common sense, preponderance of the evidence. Guys in fancy suits tend not to impress judges who have deep caseloads to clear.

    In this case, the question is the damages. Hard to calculate, but I could see service costs over a year, plus some punitive or retributive damages in some jurisdictions. The higher you make it, the more incentive you give Apple to fight, so realistically, I'd peg a reasonable suit at $500-750.

    If it's worth your time to do the research and/or go through the hoops of the small claims procedure in your jurisdiction (5-10 hours for a novice), then I'd say go for it. If people did it all the time, corporations would be much more careful and responsive.

    Otherwise, my point is that the parent post is mostly FUD, mixed with ignorance.

  • by Daniel Phillips ( 238627 ) on Sunday February 19, 2012 @12:26AM (#39090551)

    Actually, it betrays a rather extensive lack of clue about antenna design, and the elevation of form over function. It also suggests some engineers quaking in their proverbial boots instead of telling Jobs what a dumb idea it was.

Think of it! With VLSI we can pack 100 ENIACs in 1 sq. cm.!