Apple is facing a new lawsuit from a group of University students from China, who are frustrated with the company’s decision to no longer include a charger with their iPhones.
According to Vice, Apple originally decided to forgo including power adapters and earbuds with new versions of its iPhone. At the time, the tech giant said the decision was motivated by environmental concerns, as it would allow them to save on resources and carbon emissions.
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However, since then, there’s been suspicion Apple made the decision primarily to cut costs, not to reduce its environmental impact. Additionally, requiring consumers to buy additional accessories for their devices also increases their profits.
This is part of the argument being made by the students. The plaintiffs also claim they cannot charge iPhones as advertised on their website since the USB-C to Lightning cable doesn’t work with traditional chargers that come with USB-A ports, which are common with most devices. The court case is explained in detail in a report by Shanghai Law Journal.
The case is being spearheaded by one student, identified as Xiaofang, who became frustrated with Apple after she realized the USB-C to Lightning cable included with her iPhone isn’t compatible with the wall chargers that previously came with Apple devices.
The lawsuit argues this forces consumers like Xiaofang to purchase a new USB-C compatible charger. Or, they can alternatively invest in a MagSafe charger, Apple’s new wireless charger. The case also suggests out that Apple’s MagSafe chargers are proof their environmental concerns are ingenuine since wireless chargers use more energy than wired ones.
As such, since failure to include a charger with the iPhone indirectly motivates people to buy MagSafe chargers, the plaintiffs argue it’s having a detrimental effect on the environment. So, Apple can’t say their decision to not include chargers was eco-motivated since the alternative they’ve left customers with is also damaging.
In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs are asking Apple to provide a wall charger for the iPhone 12 Pro Max purchased by Xiaofang, 100 yuan or $16 USD for breach of contract, and to cover all legal fees.
So far, a representative for Apple has responded to the lawsuit only to emphasize that it’s common for phone manufacturers to sell phones and chargers separately. However, the plaintiffs have emphasized that several Chines phone makers provide consumers with the option to buy devices with and without chargers, The Verge reports. The case is still ongoing.
This isn’t the first time Apple has gotten into legal trouble for failing to include chargers in its iPhone 12 series. Just this year, Brazil’s consumer protection agency fined the company $2 million over this issue. However, there’s no reason to suggest Apple is rethinking their decision to forgo chargers with iPhones, much to the public’s disdain.
Sources: Vice, Shanghai Law Journal, The Verge,
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