Judge grants, denies parts of Apple’s motion to dismiss complaints filed over iPhone battery life allegations

By Sandra Lane | Oct 16, 2018

SAN JOSE – Apple was granted several motions to dismiss claims filed by customers over allegations the tech company reduced the performance of certain iPhone models in iOS updates.

A hearing to review Apple’s motion to dismiss a worldwide class action lawsuit that included 122 plaintiffs from all 50 U.S. states and several U.S. territories as well as foreign countries was held on Oct. 1 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

“The court finds that some of plaintiffs’ allegations are at full capacity, but others need to be recharged. The court grants in part and denies in part Apple’s motion to dismiss,” Judge Edward J. Davila wrote.

The problem that precipitated the response from so many Apple customers is related to battery life issues. As stated in the court ruling, the plaintiffs alleged “Apple included code in updates to its mobile operating system (iOS) that significantly reduced the performance of certain models of the iPhone.”

Another complaint customers alleged that caused them problems was that Apple failed to disclose that the iOS updates would affect performance of their iPhones. 

The details of the judge’s orders, as quoted in his ruling, are as follows:

“The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss the non-U.S. plaintiffs’ False Advertising Law (FAL) claims. The court denies Apple’s motion to dismiss the U.K. plaintiffs’ claims under either the doctrine of international comity or forum non conveniens.

"The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) claim with respect to iPhone 5 and iPad models. The court also grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ CFAA claim to the extent that it is based on. The court otherwise denies Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ CFAA claim.

"The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ California Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) claim.

"The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ UCL claim under the unlawful and unfair prongs with respect to iPhone 5 and iPad models, but otherwise denies Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ Unfair Competition Law (UCL) claim under the unlawful and unfair prongs. The court grants Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ UCL claim under the fraudulent prong.

"The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ False Advertising Law (FAL) claim.

"The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ Computer Data Access and Fraud Act (CDAFA) claim with respect to iPhone 5 and iPad models, but otherwise denies Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ CDAFA claim.

"The court grants with leave to amend Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ trespass to chattels claim with respect to iPhone 5 and iPad models, but otherwise denies Apple’s motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ trespass to chattels claim.”

Davila said that plaintiffs had until Thursday, Nov. 1 to file and serve an amended complaint consistent with the order.

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Apple Inc. U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division

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