The Shanghai Consumer Council has asked Apple for information about the company’s decision to slow down iPhones with degraded batteries, or Throttlegate, according to Reuters. This new call joins a chorus of lawsuits, and even a French criminal probe, demanding information and damages for the practice.
iPhone users uncovered the practice by analyzing benchmark data from GeekBench. That research found consistent slower performance on iPhones with degraded batteries. The press and class action lawyers quickly (and erroneously) turned that into Apple slowing down old iPhones on the whole, dropping tons of negative publicity on the company.
Apple quickly copped to the practice—once it was already discovered—and explained it was a technical solution designed to keep affected devices from shutting down unexpectedly. The company began doing so in February of 2017, but the whole thing has been (erroneously) taken as confirmation by the uninformed that it’s a deliberate effort to trick people into buying new iPhones.
There has been a flurry of class actions filed in the U.S. over the issues as lawyers smell corporate blood in the water. Apple has apologized for not informing customers. The company also lowered the price of battery replacements by US$50, down to $29, for one year. The Shanghai Consume Council wants to know what Apple is going to do about it in China, too.