Class-action charges Apple, AT&T with unlawful business practices

1356

Comments

  • Reply 41 of 107
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,036member
    I am not sure if you all remember the law the Feds pass about class action law suites, once the claim damages go over a certian amount and the parties involved cross state boundards these case will automaticaly heard at the Fed level not state courts. Also with the recent Supreme court class action cases which have been going in the favor of the companies verses the individuals I doubt these cases will be found in the favor of the individual special if the courts think these are lawyer driven lawsuites verse individuals.



    Our Fed courts are more about personal responsible than they are against big business. They most like will see this more about individuals needing to take responsibility for their own actions and not make the company responsible for what they did.



    I was once told by a corporate lawyer for a company I worked for "if your not being sued by someone for something then you not pushing the boundaries of your business and you playing it too safe and conservatiive" it was an interesting comment coming from a lawyer since lawyers tend to be conservative most of the time.



    As somone pointed out here, it will be interesting to see how this all settles out since it is obvious it is not clear to anyone what can and can not be done. Also, it would have been foolish to think that Apple did not think most of this threw ahead of time.
  • Reply 42 of 107
    taskisstaskiss Posts: 1,212member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    That would be supporting unlocked phones, which Apple has told you not to do in the first place.



    And if they do it once, they gots to do it forever more...
  • Reply 43 of 107
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by i.s View Post


    Exactly right. Nothing these users are doing is in violation of any law or contract. You can buy an iPhone (and it becomes YOUR PROPERTY without signing anything at all with AT&T. There is positively nothing outside the law or in violation of any legal agreements by unlocking your phone and using it with another carrier.



    Apple is essentially going out of their way to force lock-in to one carrier in the US without any technical reason whatsoever. This is monopolistic. Those who buy an iPhone are not legally bound to have an AT&T account.



    Well, I am not a lawyer (IANAL) but from my reading of things both parties are perfectly within their rights to basically do whatever they like. If you buy an iPhone then yes, it's yours, and you're not doing anything illegal by hacking it to unlock it (ie. you're not in violation of the DMCA, even though on the surface you might appear to be) but conversely, Apple and AT&T are perfectly within their rights to try and stop you.



    Just because you're allowed to try and unlock a phone doesn't mean the supplier isn't allowed to sell a phone and firmware that makes that difficult. As long as it's clearly described what you can and cannot do with the product when you buy it (or if you apply a particular update) then caveat emptor.



    Imagine I sell a new line of MP3 players that comes with its own headphones that use a square headphone jack instead of a round one, with a great big warning sticker on it saying the contacts will be irreperably damaged if you try to plug in round ones. If you do manage to knock together some sort of adapter that successfully lets you plug in your round jack headphones then good luck to you, but that doesn't mean I the manufacturer am legally obliged to provide round headphone sockets just because some users might prefer it that way.



    If you don't like square headphone sockets then don't buy my player, and don't complain if you tried to force in the round ones and broke the connector in the process!



    -Rolf
  • Reply 44 of 107
    dgnr8dgnr8 Posts: 196member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by i.s View Post


    Exactly right. Nothing these users are doing is in violation of any law or contract. You can buy an iPhone (and it becomes YOUR PROPERTY without signing anything at all with AT&T. There is positively nothing outside the law or in violation of any legal agreements by unlocking your phone and using it with another carrier.



    That is 100% correct

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by i.s View Post


    Apple is essentially going out of their way to force lock-in to one carrier in the US without any technical reason whatsoever.



    Wrong! They have an exclusive contract with AT&T and have an obligation to honor the contract they have signed with AT&T.

    Now, if you want all of the upcoming features for the iPhone (Mind you they are free do to the fact you are recieving them after the sale of the phone and the 2 year contract with AT&T), then you will have to use the iPhone on both Apple and AT&T terms period.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by i.s View Post


    This is monopolistic.



    It is only if you consider they are the only ones that produce the iPhone.

    However this is inaccurate based on the industry.

    As with many carriers you can choose between candy bar phones up to smart phones so the monopolistic moniker holds no grounds.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by i.s View Post


    Those who buy an iPhone are not legally bound to have an AT&T account.



    Once again you are 100% correct.

    Once again the point is if you do not use AT&T and use the iPhone in a manner in which not recommened by the mfg (Apple) then you take sole responsibility for the warranty becoming invalidated or void.

    At which time if you down load the iPhone update, after being fair warned of the possible implications to the hardware (Brick) or no longer useable with other carriers, then the warranty is void period.
  • Reply 45 of 107
    rot'napplerot'napple Posts: 1,839member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Apple must quickly crush these lawsuits or risk further negative publicity for iPhone. I know, I know, this lawsuit is without merit, but it's bad for business.





    Actually all the lawsuits are keeping the iPhone more in the public eye then even Apple's commercials.



    My home town paper has had at least three, I think, write ups regarding the various suits and I've seen some of these lawsuits on cable news networks.



    Now it might be bad for business if any one of these lawsuits were of a legitamate claim like iPhone manufactured using 'child sweatshop labor' or iPhone's is not environmentally friendly or iPhone may overheat and create a fire hazard.



    Instead, when a iPhone lawsuit creeps out, it's about "locked to AT&T", "battery sealed", "unapproved 3rd party software no longer works", "hacked iPhone SIM is bricked", "phone costs less", "I can't resell for more money", etc. When one looks at it from that point of view they can only walk away thinking those lawsuits are brought on by a bunch of, rightly or wrongly, 'whiners' and 'greedy bastard' types. It's extremely comical and makes one question our legal system.
  • Reply 46 of 107
    shetlineshetline Posts: 4,695member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    That would be supporting unlocked phones, which Apple has told you not to do in the first place.



    Not that it rises to the level of making a lawsuit valid, nor that it obviates the fact that anyone trying to unlock an iPhone should know they're taking a risk for which Apple can't be held liable, there's a separate issue of whether any lock should be there in the first place. The lock is a deliberately anti-competitive business practice. The legal question is whether it's anti-competitive in a way that violates existing laws. It probably isn't. But I hope it is, or at least that laws are changed so such practices become illegal.



    There's also the issue of whether "bricking" is deliberate or not. Most people seem to think it isn't deliberate on Apple's part. A few people have a very aggressive "F*ck you if you f*cked with your f*cking iPhone you f*cking ungrateful EULA-violating bastard!", and seem passionately favor deliberate bricking, wanting and hoping that Apple would do, and will continue to do, such a thing deliberately.



    And then there's the issue of whether bricking should even be possible. It seems to me to be very bad design when any mere software change can completely cripple a device beyond the user's ability to do a complete reset of some sort. Just to protect their own interests in case one of their own software bugs comes along someday and bites Apple in the ass some day -- massive recalls are never good PR -- there should always, always be a way that any ordinary user, without the use of specialized hardware or software, can reset an iPhone, iPod, or whatever, to it's "factory new" condition, without having to rely on warrantied or unwarrantied repair service of any kind.



    In my opinion the last two paragraphs have nothing to do with the validity of a lawsuit, by the way. They're just general comments on the atmosphere in which the lawsuit is taking place.
  • Reply 47 of 107
    A lovely phrase which basically means I have no evidence, I don't have a clue as to what the truth is, but by alleging wrongdoing "on information and belief" and filing a really solid common counts cause of action, I'll overcome the summary judgment motion, enabling me to go on a fishing expedition of a lifetime as my lawyer seeks to settle rather than litigate.



    What an absolute crock! As a shareholder of Apple, I think it's time for Apple shareholders to band together and file a lawsuit against John and Jane Does 1-10,000 (with a strong common counts clause) to recover damages caused by frivolous lawsuits that are dragging the price of Apple's stock down for no valid reason. As shareholders, we pay for this bullshit on the bottom line because litigation is expensive and hits the company's bottom line.



    It's time to fight back! Let them know that if their case has no merit, we'll add each and every co-plaintiff to our lawsuit and seek damages against them if the stock suffers because these idiots don't read the newspapers, software licensing agreements, cell phone contracts or anything else that's put in front of them.



    One final point, I along with hundreds of thousands drooled at the prospect of an iphone at Macworld San Francisco. It's October and I still don't have one because of PRE RELEASE publicity on my local TV and in the newspapers (let alone in Macworld and MAclife) which informed me the phone was 2G and the battery was soldered to the board, among other things.
  • Reply 48 of 107
    os11os11 Posts: 30member
    It's increasingly clear that the "bricked" iPhones were a result of:



    A sect of hackers that has split from the iPhone Dev Team and claims

    that AnySIM and iUnlock both had critical flaws that led to the bricking

    of hacked iPhones during the update to 1.1.1. They place the blame on

    poorly written hacks by the iPhone Dev Team and have splintered off into

    their own "elite" team.



    Fight! Fight! Fight!



    http://www.informationweek.com/blog/...have_an_ibrick.

    html



    So it wasn't Apple after all, (as everyone already knew) it was the

    hackers that screwed up their own hack!!!



    so funny!
  • Reply 49 of 107
    Well, this part is definitely junk:



    Quote:

    None of these changes in the iPhone software update version 1.1.1 were technically required for the purpose of the upgrade, the suit claims, but were "designed solely to advance Apple's unlawful purposes and conduct."



    What about enabling the WiFi Music Store? That sounds like a pretty valid reason for the 1.1.1 update. I'm sure Apple is not crying any tears over the fact that some of those that hacked their iPhones got bricked -- that may have been just a bonus. However, claiming that Apple "solely" targeted those folks is patently absurd and may threaten the future of the case.



    I'd like to know what AT&T's role in all this is. They have a history of egregious anti-consumer behavior and I wouldn't be surprised that they drove a lot of this "bricking" effort. I've always thought Apple's deal with AT&T was a Faustian bargain, and I think suits like this may help Apple regain its independence.



    In any case, I would think that it would be good PR if Apple Stores were equipped to restore phones back to their original new-in-the-box condition, and they would help iPhone owners "no questions asked." I bet they'd sell tons of stuff to the people who are waiting the 10-15 minutes it would take to restore the phone back to the factory condition.
  • Reply 50 of 107
    Ok, as a non-iphone user, can someone clarify for me...



    The iPod touch is at its core, a non-phone iphone. You can restore an iPod by clicking "restore" in iTunes, yet you can't do that with iPhone? I've had to restore my iPod Video a couple times just from it crashing from normal use, and the iPhone seems quite a bit more complex than a simple mp3 player, yet there's no way to restore it if something crashes?
  • Reply 51 of 107
    I, personally, am sick of these lawsuits. The people are just acting like parasites, why don't they come up with an idea, and develop it and do the same thing? They can't.
  • Reply 52 of 107
    taskisstaskiss Posts: 1,212member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Able-X View Post


    Ok, as a non-iphone user, can someone clarify for me...



    The iPod touch is at its core, a non-phone iphone. You can restore an iPod by clicking "restore" in iTunes, yet you can't do that with iPhone? I've had to restore my iPod Video a couple times just from it crashing from normal use, and the iPhone seems quite a bit more complex than a simple mp3 player, yet there's no way to restore it if something crashes?



    To initiate the iTunes connection between devices it's necessary to establish some sort of mutually agreed upon communication method - the devices have to know the other is there, they have to "handshake", etc.



    I'd guess that the bricked phones are unable to do that, possibly because their communication abllty has been modified..
  • Reply 53 of 107
    kreshkresh Posts: 379member
    Without supporting documents like Apple 's inner-company emails directing programmers to intentionally brick iPhones, that have have been hacked, they will never prove intent.
  • Reply 54 of 107
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Able-X View Post


    Ok, as a non-iphone user, can someone clarify for me...



    The iPod touch is at its core, a non-phone iphone. You can restore an iPod by clicking "restore" in iTunes, yet you can't do that with iPhone? I've had to restore my iPod Video a couple times just from it crashing from normal use, and the iPhone seems quite a bit more complex than a simple mp3 player, yet there's no way to restore it if something crashes?



    Yes, there's a Restore button in iTunes for iPhones, just like for iPods.



    Is the Restore button there for hacked iPhones? No idea. Is Apple responsible for providing a Restore button for hacked iPhones. I believe the answer is a resounding NO. And quite frankly, doing so would be a support nightmare.



    Apple sells iPhones and everyone knows they have an exclusive deal w/ AT&T. I'm betting there were specific clauses in that contract to have Apple take 'reasonable measures' to protect this exclusivity. This is akin to Apple protecting music you purchase from iTunes. They are required, by contract with the music companies, to take 'reasonable measures' to protect the purchased music.



    Is this monopolistic? Hardly. As others have said, you may own the hardware, but Apple owns the software and has every right to deny support of modified software. Can you imagine any other software developer being asked to support modified versions of their software? That idea is simply laughable.



    Can't believe all the griping here. It's a phone, for goodness sakes. A PHONE!



    Harlin!
  • Reply 55 of 107
    shetlineshetline Posts: 4,695member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by svesan03 View Post


    As a shareholder of Apple, I think it's time for Apple shareholders to band together and file a lawsuit against John and Jane Does 1-10,000 (with a strong common counts clause) to recover damages caused by frivolous lawsuits that are dragging the price of Apple's stock down for no valid reason.



    I agree that there are a lot of frivolous lawsuits. If someone were actually suing Apple for damages due to hacking, that would be frivolous. Think that Apple might be engaging in an unlawful practice, why possibly still without merit, isn't quite so frivolous.



    But you titled your response "On information and belief", and then said "A lovely phrase which basically means I have no evidence".



    Exactly what evidence could you possibly provide that Apple stock was reduced in value by a specific amount, by a specific cause? Could you offer anything more substantial than your belief that a particular lawsuit hurt the price? Could you do anything more than make wild guesses at how much exactly the price had suffered?



    I'm afraid you're suggesting fighting a frivolous lawsuit with yet another frivolous lawsuit.
  • Reply 56 of 107
    shetlineshetline Posts: 4,695member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Harlinator View Post


    Is the Restore button there for hacked iPhones? No idea. Is Apple responsible for providing a Restore button for hacked iPhones. I believe the answer is a resounding NO. And quite frankly, doing so would be a support nightmare.



    NOT having a user-accessible way to reset a device is the real "support nightmare". You never knows when your own bugs might cause an unforeseen lock-up condition, perhaps even on a mass scale. You most definitely DO NOT want to risk a massive recall if something like that happens.



    As long as the reset method you provide is difficult enough to avoid triggering accidentally (things like holding two buttons pressed for so many seconds, only with the device plugged into external power) the support problem of people doing resets when maybe they shouldn't have is nowhere near so bad as to be worth giving up good bailout technique that might someday save you from having to issue a mass recall notice.



    What's the downside of resetting an iPhone, after all? In most cases all you'd need to do is plug the phone back into your computer and everything (except perhaps a few contacts or whatnot you'd entered directly into the phone since your last sync) will be restored and as good as new a short time afterwards.
  • Reply 57 of 107
    I just want to point out that everyone is focusing on Apple and the iPhone but not on companies that have been locking phones to their networks for years. If you buy a phone, LG Chocolate (it's exclusive to Verizon) for example, you can not get that phone unlocked no mater how much you beg and plead (not that it would work on any other network but Sprints, i.e. CDMA). Not to say anything about hacking it to get it to run an alternative browser like Opera, doing that you would not be able to get Verizon to support any problems you had with that phone. When you buy a phone and agree to the terms you know what your getting into, the big reason for all this griping and throwing tantrums is because these people suddenly can't sell the hottest phone in the gray market. If there truly was a law that was enforceable about unlocking the phones for use on other networks, Sprint and Verizion would be the first on the hit list.
  • Reply 58 of 107
    quinneyquinney Posts: 2,528member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macFanDave View Post


    In any case, I would think that it would be good PR if Apple Stores were equipped to restore phones back to their original new-in-the-box condition, and they would help iPhone owners "no questions asked." I bet they'd sell tons of stuff to the people who are waiting the 10-15 minutes it would take to restore the phone back to the factory condition.



    The people who would take most advantage (possibly many, many times each) would be

    unsuccessful hackers. What exactly do you think they would buy from the Apple store

    on their tenth visit to have a botched hack reversed? Is good PR in the hacker community

    more valuable than the bad PR created in the Apple shareholder community that would

    be created by incurring this type of ongoing, open-ended expense (those Apple store

    employees get paid, remember)? Also, while the Apple employee is unbricking the iphone

    of a failed hacker, he/she is not helping a new customer or an existing customer who

    has not done anything to void their warranty.
  • Reply 59 of 107
    physguyphysguy Posts: 920member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by shetline View Post


    NOT having a user-accessible way to reset a device is the real "support nightmare". You never knows when your own bugs might cause an unforeseen lock-up condition, perhaps even on a mass scale. You most definitely DO NOT want to risk a massive recall if something like that happens.



    As long as the reset method you provide is difficult enough to avoid triggering accidentally (things like holding two buttons pressed for so many seconds, only with the device plugged into external power) the support problem of people doing resets when maybe they shouldn't have is nowhere near so bad as to be worth giving up good bailout technique that might someday save you from having to issue a mass recall notice.



    What's the downside of resetting an iPhone, after all? In most cases all you'd need to do is plug the phone back into your computer and everything (except perhaps a few contacts or whatnot you'd entered directly into the phone since your last sync) will be restored and as good as new a short time afterwards.



    But there is a user accessible way to reset the entire phone EXCEPT SIM UNLOCKING. Hold the Home and Power buttons for about 10 sec and then release the Power button while holding the Home button and you get a full restore (well not quite because it doesn't remove all files it doesn't know about) but this works fine as long as you haven't hacked the SIM in these strange ways.



    This seems like a very reasonable solution to me.
  • Reply 60 of 107
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Clive At Five View Post


    Companies can have monopolistic behaviors without actually being a monopoly.



    For example, when MS started bundling WMP with Windows, they got nailed for monopolistic behavior because WMP was unrelated to the OS so users weren't presented a fair choice in media players.



    Windows has a monopoly. MS was trying to leverage that monopoly to help WMP.



    Neither apple nor ATT has a monopoly in phones or phone service, so they have no power to force anyone to do anything.



    I'm not sure what the point of that comparison is, it's just more evidence that you haven't the foggiest idea what a monopoly really is.
Sign In or Register to comment.