Apple and Samsung have each been fined 5 million euros by Italy’s anti-trust watchdog for slowing down their mobile devices, signaling the first major push back over the unsavory business practice.
Back in December of 2017, Apple was discovered to have been throttling the performance of iPhones. Eventually, the company came clean about the practice, pointing to degraded batteries as the reason. Nevertheless, the company issued a public apology and launched a battery replacement program to try to shift some of the negativity. Apple was fined an additional 5 million euros for failing to give customers clear information about maintaining and replacing batteries.
Unfortunately for the company, Italy is not so keen on forgetting the issue and fined it for slowing down phones.
An unexpected inclusion in the fine was Samsung, which hasn’t been accused of slowing down its phones but Italy stated that both Apple and Samsung pushed out updates that “had caused serious dysfunctions and reduced performance significantly, thereby accelerating the process of replacing them.”
It leads to the old question of planned obsolescence. That’s a conversation for another time, but for now Apple and Samsung will each have to fork over 5 million euros.