WHEN YOU'RE A COMPANY the size of Apple, and with billions of dollars in the bank, people trying to sue you is just a standard day at the office. That said, Apple's legal department may groan when they see the latest letter, because they'll see the logo for Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro: a firm that has history extracting money from Cook & Co.
Back in 2012, the firm sued Apple and book publishers for ebook pricing on Apple's iBooks store, ultimately winning $450m three years later. Yes, that may be pocket change to Apple, but the latest target could be more lucrative as it allegedly affects iMacs and MacBooks sold since 2013.
The law firm alleges that Apple has been selling computers without dust filters, which causes problems to the display and potentially damages the internals. When the machines bring in cold air to keep components cool, in other words, they also bring in a lot of unwelcome dust in the process, the lawyers claim.
"iMac and MacBook owners have reported dark smudges and spots on the interior of the screens of their desktop computers as well as excessive slowness and breakdowns of their computers related to the lack of filter on Apple computers," the suit alleges.
It goes on to claim that "Apple refuses to remedy the defect" and forces hard-pressed consumers to pay "more than $500 to fix this screen defect, and even more if they wish to replace parts integral to the computer's speed and performance."
While we've not heard of this being a particularly widespread problem, the high fees to fix definitely sound believable, as anybody who has ever taken an out of warranty Mac to the Apple Store for a service will well know.
"We believe Apple owes it to the purchasers of these premium, high-end computers to pay for the widespread defect, and we seek to represent iMac owners to recover their losses in costs to repair this defect."
The firm is currently welcoming people affected by the problem to join the class action lawsuit and assures interested parties that there is "no cost or fee whatsoever in joining this action." That certainly makes it cheaper than AppleCare, we'll give it that. µ
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