How to Claim Your Piece of Apple's $500 Million iPhone Throttling Settlement

Illustration for article titled How to Claim Your Piece of Apples $500 Million iPhone Throttling Settlement
Photo: Sean Gallup (Getty Images)

Earlier this year, Apple agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit claiming iOS updates throttled iPhones. Now the company is responsible for paying out $500 million to those who owned one of the affected iPhone models.

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If that’s you, you can now submit a claim to get your piece of the settlement, according to MacRumors. In other words, it’s time to get rich, y’all! And by rich, I mean you’re eligible for a $25 payment and will have to wait several months.

If you live in the U.S. and owned an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus, and/or SE running iOS 10.2.1 or later prior to Dec., 21, 2017, you’re eligible for that sweet, sweet $25. You’re also eligible if you owned an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus running iOS 11.2 or later before that same date.

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While it helps if you know your iPhone’s serial number, the website does let you look up old devices via your Apple ID. That option was great for me, because I gave my mom my iPhone 7 several moons ago and she has since upgraded to an iPhone 8. Who knows where that old iPhone is? You might have to try several old addresses when using the search tool, as it might not come up with your most recent one. (I had to input three old addresses before it worked.) If, for some reason, you want to file your claim by snail mail, you can do that too.

Don’t expect to see that $25 right away, however. The deadline for filing is Oct. 6, 2020, and the court will hold a final hearing on Dec. 4 to decide whether to approve the settlement. That Oct. 6 deadline also applies to anyone who might object to the settlement or want to exclude themselves—a thing you would want to do if you were planning to sue Apple directly. That means you have plenty of time to file, but also that it’ll be a long while before anyone sees any money. The settlement lawsuit’s FAQ notes that even if the final settlement is approved, there may be an appeal that could lengthen the whole process.

While it’s estimated that claimants will get $25 per eligible device, that number may change depending on how many people file. As part of the lawsuit settlement, Apple agreed to pay a minimum of $310 million and a maximum of $500 million. That means you could possibly get less money, depending on how many claims are submitted.

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The original lawsuit was filed in late 2017, soon after Apple admitted that it throttled iPhone CPU performance to preserve battery life without informing users. It eventually led to Apple providing discounted battery replacements, but nonetheless, people were rightfully pissed. Earlier this year, France slapped Apple with a $27 million fine for iPhone throttling, along with a mandatory notice on Apple’s French website telling consumers that they had been misled.

Consumer tech reporter by day, danger noodle by night. No, I'm not the K-Pop star.

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DISCUSSION

Wow they made it super easy to find the serial number of the phone I used 6 years ago! </sarcasm>

I tried the look up tool and no results.