Thursday, August 02, 2007

Stupid people and utter lies

There are very few people in this world who will not try to make a fast buck, but doing through wilful legislation might be one of the worst. This is a brilliant example of wasteful prosecution.
A Cook County, Illinois resident has filed a class action lawsuit against Apple and AT&T over the iPhone.

Jose Trujillo is claiming that Apple and AT&T misled iPhone buyers by not clearly informing them that the iPhone battery was sealed, and could only be professionally replaced.

The battery issue was well-known by just about everybody. Given the vast amount of print hype about the iPhone, this gentleman is quite obviously lying if he says he didn't know about the issue.

Worse, his case is, in any event, based on lies.
According to the papers:
Unknown to the Plaintiff, and undisclosed to the public, prior to purchase, the iPhone is a sealed unit with its battery soldered on the inside of the device so that it cannot be changed by the owner…The battery enclosed in the iPhone can only be charged approximately 300 times before it will be in need of replacement, necessitating a new battery annually for owners of the iPhone.

The iPhone battery will not die after 300 charges. This has been reported but is, in fact, a distortion of the truth, i.e. a lie, as was pointed out sometime ago by John Gruber.
Let’s double-check and see what Apple actually says on their iPhone battery information page:
A properly maintained iPhone battery is designed to retain up to 80% of its original capacity after 400 full charge and discharge cycles. You may choose to replace your battery when it no longer holds sufficient charge to meet your needs.

So Apple says that after 400 cycles, the battery should hold about 80 percent of its original capacity.

So, the lawsuit is based on misinformation. Also, of course, Trujillo could simply have returned the iPhone to the shop where he bought it and got his money refunded. He chose not to and is, instead, bringing this entirely frivolous court action.

I suspect that he will lose; and I hope that all costs are awarded against him and he is bankrupted and thrown onto the street with—although I hate the idea of so defiling such a beautiful object—his iPhone rammed firmly up his jacksy.

Fuck, but I loathe stupid, lazy and greedy people.

6 comments:

Will said...

There is another view, DK.

Large organisations make use of unequal knowledge between buyer and seller. Apple is selectively withholding information that a customer, in the shop, looking at the kit, might want to have in mind to judge the Total Cost of Ownership.

If you buy an iPhone, you might think that, if the battery were to fail, you could go buy a replacement and slot that in. A battery for a Nokia phone in the US might be twenty five bucks.

With Apple, the battery replacement is going to cost you ninety bucks. Plus tax. And you don't sort it out over the counter. You have to do without your whizzy phone while Apple fix it. Do they give a 1-day turnaround guarantee? .You are on a $600 two year contract with one of the major service providers, remember. Do they loan you a phone?

So the battery will hold 80% of its charge for 400 charge cycles? You’d fall for that one, DK? No? Too right: there’s all that pony about “up to” 80% of its charge when “properly maintained”. Straight out of a meeting between the engineers, finance and the legal team, that one. If you feel let down by your battery, expect to have show that you have properly maintained everything. Someone, somewhere has the mode for failure rate of the batteries. Given Apple’s performance with the iPod, and its battery troubles, why do I think it might fall a ways short of 80%?

If this plaintiff in a civil claim (not a prosecution) really is looking for payola, I expect he will to be disappointed. If he does persist and get a large award, it will come from a civil jury – his follow-citizens who agree that, in this case, the individual was right to stand up against a large corporation.

The guy has used the system to draw attention to what he believes to be bad conduct by a large organisation. Seems not too far from libertarian principles to me.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Creative MP3 players are way cheaper and better than i-Pods, the batteries last about ten times longer for a start.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Mark,

It isn't often that I disagree with you, but this...

"the batteries last about ten times longer for a start."

... is crap.

Let us look at Creative's top-of=the-range hard drive MP3 and video player/MP3, the Vision W, shall we? They say:

"Long lasting battery
Get more video and audio playback time with the included removable and rechargeable battery. Enjoy up to 13 hours of music, or 4.5 hours of movies."


Now, let's look at Apple's top-of-the-range hard drive video player/MP3, the 80GB iPod (20GB more than Zen's, by the way).

"Up to 20 hours of battery life refers to 80GB model and music playback.

6.5 hours of battery life refers to 80GB model and is based on H.264 1.5-Mbps video at 640-by-480 resolution combined with 128-Kbps audio."


So, 5 hours more of MP3 play and 2 hours more of movies. And, yes, the reviews that I have seen reach those levels or exceed them.

Whoops!

DK

Devil's Kitchen said...

"Seems not too far from libertarian principles to me."

I do so love what people ascribe to "libertarian principles". The principle is one of choice: you don't like the iPhone? Don't buy it.

"Apple is selectively withholding information that a customer, in the shop, looking at the kit, might want to have in mind to judge the Total Cost of Ownership."

Hardly. One can, for instance, ask the salesperson. Even if this man has been living in a media-exclusion zone for the last six months, he might be able to see, from the endless iPhones on display in the Apple Stores, that it is a sealed unit.

"Given Apple’s performance with the iPod, and its battery troubles, why do I think it might fall a ways short of 80%?"

I don't know, Will, because I have never had a problem. I did not maintain my first iPod's battery properly (I did not allow the three charge/discharge cycles that you should do at the beginning) and after four years the 8 hour battery was still delivering 5 to 6 hours of continuous play.

Nah, sorry; this is a malicious case and nothing more than that. If Apple were a monopoly, or even approaching it, in this area, I might agree that he has a case (because he would have no choice, do you see?) but they aren't.

DK

Mark Wadsworth said...

As to buying an i-Pod, I had no choice, the wife wanted one for Xmas. It's only two years old and the batteries last for about an hour after fully charging. My Creative (two and a half years old) will do a straight 15 hours (provided you don't start deleting stuff and so on).

My MP3 player has 20 GB, I've got over 4,000 good songs on there, why would I need more? There aren't many more good songs anyway.

Will said...

"If Apple were a monopoly, or even approaching it, in this area, I might agree that he has a case (because he would have no choice, do you see?) but they aren't"

Hmmm.

In the personal digital-music player market, there was only player to have in 2002/3 for many people. If Nokia were currently going head-to-head with Apple with a similar touch screen mobile….

Apple's shows astuteness in making fashionable products. They expect to sell the iPhone so well that they decided not to launch on overseas markets, yet. That’s even with corporate buyers in North America steering clear of the product.

Apple make a good return on the sale. And a return on after sales service they could foresee but many customers did not. If Apple live with it, but a minority of customers subsequently feel disappointed, they get what they deserve and are right to be described just stupid lazy or greedy.