Sunday, August 24, 2008

Apple Faces Lawsuit Over Misleading iPhone Advertising

Lawyers for Jessica Alena Smith filed suit in U.S. District Court in Alabama and seeking damages in excess of $5 million against Apple Inc. for misleading her with their commercials which said the newly-released handset is “twice as fast.”

In a 10-page complaint filed in court, Smith said that her iPhone 3G was not at all what Apple ads said it would be. While Apple made profit by selling its famed handsets, she, and other customers as well, had been misled into buying the new version of the iPhone, but did not get for their money what the producer said they would.

"Defendant intended for customers to believe its statements and representations about the Defective iPhone 3Gs, and to trust that the device was 'twice as fast at half the price'," the unsatisfied customer wrote in the complaint.

The lawsuit seeks "actual, general, special, incidental, statutory, and consequential damages," plus interest and attorneys fees.

Apple customers have been complaining about 3G network problems since the iPhone's July 11 debut. Since then, several thousand messages have been posted to Apple's support forum, detailing difficulties making calls from areas supposedly covered by a 3G network and griping about weak signals, dropped calls and slower-than-promised data download speeds.

On Monday, Apple issued an iPhone software update that a company spokeswoman said "improves communication with 3G networks." Complaints have continued to surface on Apple's support forum, reporting that the iPhone 2.0.2 update did nothing to solve their 3G reception and connection problems.

Smith's lawsuit touched on Apple's promises stating, "The defendant (Apple Inc.) expressly warranted that the defective iPhone 3G would be "twice as fast" and would otherwise perform adequately on the 3G standard or protocol," it says.

"The defective iPhone 3Gs do not conform to these express representations because they fail to connect and/or adequately maintain a connection to the 3G standard and/or protocol."

The lawsuit asked that a federal judge grant the case class-action status, claiming that "the proposed Class contains thousands and perhaps tens of thousands of members." Smith also asked the court to force Apple to repair or replace the iPhone 3G, and award her, and if the case is given class-action status, other iPhone owners, an unspecified amount of money in damages.

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