Apple in Trouble in Canada for Planned Obsolescence of Devices

News Apple Planned Obsolescence Featured2

Apple has been fighting this for a few years. Once iPhone users learned that the company intentionally slowed down devices with older batteries, it has been the assumption that this was done for the purpose of forcing people to buy new phones and not hold on to their older ones. This has been disproven, but the fight rages on.

Despite Apple’s “planned obsolescence” being disproven, they have lost a lawsuit in Quebec, Canada. The litigation reached Quebec’s Supreme Court, and they decided Apple was dishonest with their claims regarding their devices with a rechargeable battery and weren’t clear regarding the AppleCare and AppleCare+ coverage.

Lawsuit Decision

The lawsuit against Apple alleged the company was dishonest with Quebec residents who bought Apple devices after December 29, 2014, and those who purchased the extra warranty coverage after December 20, 2015.

The claim worked off Apple’s admissions that it intentionally slowed down devices with older batteries to prevent then from randomly shutting down. One of the plaintiffs had an iPhone 5 that they said became “completely useless” after going through an Apple software update.

Along with the phone battery issue, however, the lawsuit complained that Apple wasn’t clear with customers regarding the AppleCare extended warranty. It’s their belief the coverage that is provided isn’t worth the price they charge for it.

News Apple Planned Obsolescence Charging

Unclear in fliers for the lawsuit was what they considered a “reasonable” amount of time would be for batteries to last. Lithium-ion batteries all become less useful as they age. This will affect battery life, which will then affect the performance of a device.

This happens with all devices, whether they are Apple or not and is why batteries are considered consumables, meaning they often aren’t protected by consumer laws.

Also not clear was Apple’s intention when it intentionally began slowing devices with older batteries down when they pushed out the iOS 10.2.1 update.

Yet, this was not planned obsolescence. Apple started slowing down the devices, performance throttling, to prevent them from randomly slowing down, something that happens with all older lithium-ion batteries.

Apple issued performance updates to fix the problem with the current iOS 12, issued a cheaper battery replacement program, and will implement new methods of saving the battery in iOS 13, which is expected to be released this coming September.

Apple Loses Lawsuit

Nevertheless, Quebec’s Supreme Court has decided residents who bought an Apple device or the AppleCare extended warranty may be eligible for up to $300 in compensation. However, this only applies to Quebec residents.

The question remains, however, if this will reach Apple users elsewhere and continue the disinformation being spread that Apple implements planned obsolescence, even though the companies feels throttling performance is better than the batteries becoming unusable as they age.

Do you have an Apple device that slowed down when the battery got older? Do you still believe it’s planned obsolescence? Howe does this court decision affect you? Chime in to the comments below.

Laura Tucker Laura Tucker

Laura has spent nearly 20 years writing news, reviews, and op-eds, with more than 10 of those years as an editor as well. She has exclusively used Apple products for the past three decades. In addition to writing and editing at MTE, she also runs the site's sponsored review program.


  1. “Apple in Trouble in Canada for Planned Obsolescence of Devices”
    Manufacturing worldwide runs on “planned obsolescence”. Why do car makers come out with new models every year? Every gizmo every year has “new and improved” model(s). Why is Quebec picking on Apple???

    “It’s their belief the coverage that is provided isn’t worth the price they charge for it.”
    The purchase of extended warranties is not mandatory, it is voluntary. The users who are purchasing these warranties supposedly are reasoning human beings. If they feel the warranties are not worth the price, they are in no way obligated to buy them. It is the court of public opinion that determines whether the extended warranties are worth the price, not a court of law.

    Having said that, it was a stupid move on Apple’s part to admit that they intentionally slowed down older devices. I’m sure that their marketing flacks could have come up with some cock and bull story to justify the slow down without actually admitting that it was done intentionally.

  2. My samsung TV, bought in 2017 was working just fine, but you can tell, that the software that runs it is no longer snappy as it used to be.
    Where ti report that a manufacturer, through updates is slowing their products down so people will eventually change their perfectly working 65″ TV…
    The menus were so damn fast. now turning on the TV takes 30 seconds, navigating through the entries, same 15 seconds…
    This is planned obsolescence through software, and this is wrong.

  3. @dragonmouth – The difference between the planned obsolescence in cars and computers, etc., is that the car lasts 20 years or so but in the 1990’s computers began failing a day, a week, a month after the manufacturers warranty expired. This is “in your face” planned obsolescence that really equals consumer fraud. If you design a product to fail the day after the warranty expires, you have stolen money from the buyer. That’s a crime.

    It was inevitable. Since planned obsolescence or designed in failures were built into computers and printers, it was inevitable that someone would discover a solution to it. And a solution was discovered for it. A 40 year computer service engineer discovered a “fix” for planned or built-in failures in computers and printers. One simple process that anyone can perform has, so far, resolved 57 symptoms on computers from all manufacturers with DOS thru Win 8.1 OS environments. It also greatly extends the life of computers. If you are interested in saving money on tech related problems, this is the only way that I know of. More info at: ITServiceVeteranATprotonmailDOTcom.

Comments are closed.