What you need to know
- Apple has been fined by the Brazilian state of São Paulo.
- That's because of Apple's decision to remove the charger from its iPhone box.
- It was also fined for allegedly misleading customers, maintaining unfair contracts, and not repairing products under warranty.
Apple has been fined by the Brazilian state of São Paulo over its decision to remove the charger from the box of the iPhone 12 and previous models, as well as claims it has misled users and failed to honor repair contracts.
The agency [Procon-SP] announced on Friday (19) that it applied a fine in the amount of R $ 10,546,442.48 to Apple for selling iPhones without a charger. In addition, Procon-SP accuses the company of misleading advertising, of selling devices with factory defects, of maintaining unfair terms in the contract with consumers and of not having repaired a product that was still under warranty.
Procon-SP executive director Fernando Capez reportedly stated that Apple "needs to understand that in BRazil there are solid consumer protection laws and institutions. It needs to respect these laws and these institutions."
As the report notes, Apple was asked to explain why it had decided to remove the charger from the box of the iPhone in October, but appears not to have been satisfied with the response that it was part of Apple's "commitment to the environment". Samsung followed suit with its Galaxy S21 line, but offered pre-order customers a free charger to keep authorities happy.
The fine levied by Procon-SP also pertains to other charges, including claims Apple mislead consumers by advertising the iPhone as "water-resistant" even though consumers claim to have had problems with their devices that were in contact with water only to be told they were not entitled to a repair. It also noted complaints about "problems with iPhones after system updates", and an issue where Apple was accused of "disrespecting Brazilian law" by refusing to repair products purchased abroad within thirty days. Procon-SP also said Apple imposed "unfair terms" in contracts on customers:
"In one of them, the company disclaims all legal and implied warranties and against hidden or hidden defects; in another, it informs that 'the software distributed by Apple ... is not covered by warranty' and that 'Apple does not it guarantees that the product will work uninterruptedly or without errors' ", says Procon-SP.
Apple can appeal the ruling, and the matter could be taken to court if no resolution can be agreed upon.