GOOGLE HAS REACHED a settlement for a class-action lawsuit filed by owners of the first generation Pixel phones.
The company was accused of deliberately selling devices with defects after it emerged that a number of devices had broken microphones caused by a hairline crack in the solder.
Google promised to take action, but after a year of less-than-satisfaction, a lawsuit appears.
Now Google has agreed to pay affected users up to $500, which totals a bill of $7.25m.
That's a lot of handsets, despite the fact that Google has said repeatedly that the problem affected less than one per cent of Pixel and Pixel XL devices. It took a long time to even acknowledge the gravity of the problem.
The deal means that anyone returning a single device will be entitled to $350. The company will also refund any insurance excesses paid, and even owners of fully functioning Pixel devices could see themselves $20 to the good.
Google hasn't had a lot of luck with its branded handsets in recent years. The Nexus 6P - the Huawei-made final entry to the old canon - was also the subject of a class-action suit after a bug caused them to start endlessly boot-looping (that is to say trying over and over again to start before crashing on the splash screen).
That one has been provisionally settled by Google and Huawei for a cool $9.75m - there was no way for users to fix the problem for themselves and so had to get replacements.
A final decision will be made by the courts on 5 June, and if the deal is approved Google will start splashing the cash. The Nexus case will be ruled on at a hearing later in the year - October, in fact.
If you're in the US (or bought your phone there) this will affect you. You can sign up for updates with Google's solicitors, and they'll let you know when it's time to claim. μ
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