Apple Fined €12m For ‘Misleading’ iPhone Waterproof Claims

/ 2 years ago
apple mds

It’s well known that Apple smartphones are, generally speaking, a lot more fragile than most consumers would like. Put simply, any fall from more than 12 inches is usually the subject of horror. Particularly so as, like the buttered side of toast, they nearly always seem to want to land on the screen.

When it comes to water, however, it shouldn’t come as any surprise to hear that dropping most electrical items in it usually leads to disaster. And no, I’m not talking about trying to get some PS5 gaming in while sitting in a bathtub. For years though, despite masses of evidence to the contrary, Apple has always said that their iPhone 8 – 11 smartphones are ‘water-resistant’ for up to 30 minutes.

Following a report via Chiphell, however, it seems that Italy’s main competition regulator has taken a dim view of this claim and have subsequently just decided to fine Apple €12m for it.

Apple iPhone water

Italy Fines Apple €12m for Misleading Water Resistant Claims

In issuing this fine, the regulatory body has cited that Apple has misled its customers in two key areas regarding its smartphone water resistance. Firstly, Apple’s claim of the iPhone 8 to iPhone 11 being waterproof for up to 30 minutes at 3 to 13 feet isn’t accurate. Why? Well, while technically correct, Apple performed this test under laboratory conditions and, more so, used pure water to do it. – As you may be aware, most ‘water’, particularly out of a tap, isn’t pure, and dropping your iPhone down the toilet (it happens) for even seconds will likely, at the very least, create some problems.

More so, however, they also cited that given that Apple’s warranty expires if an iPhone is damaged in any way by ‘liquid’, it does make the claim mostly moot anyway. Put simply, what’s the point of touting water resistance as a key feature of the product if any kind of dip will immediately see Apple (no pun intended) wash their hands of it?

Apple iPhone water

What Do We Think?

Apple has yet to issue a response to this fine but it doesn’t take a financial genius to recognize that while €12m might be a lot of money to us, it’s a literal drop in the ocean for a company of their size. That being said, however, Apple will likely only fight this decision if they think there’s a chance they could win, and, let’s face it, their water-resistance claim, based on the conditions in which they make it, is certainly more than a little tenuous.

Yes, Apple does have a strong history of fighting fines imposed upon them. Call me crazy though, but in this particular instance, I wouldn’t be surprised if they just decided to quietly pay this one off.

What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!

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