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  • "iBricks:" iPhone 3G User Sues Apple Over iOS 4.0


    A lawsuit filed this week claims that Apple deliberately pushed iOS 4.0 to iPhone 3G and 3GS users, despite the fact that they knew it was buggy and slow, in order to improve sales of the iPhone 4. In a civil case brought at the County Court of San Diego in California, Bianca Wofford complains the upgrade made her phone virtually useless, and that Apple used the fact that users can't downgrade to an older version of the operating system to induce them to buy iPhone 4s. The case may bring closer scrutiny to Apple's restrictions on the ability of users to load the software they want on devices they own.

    The crux of Wofford's complaint is that Apple urged users of older phones to upgrade, promising performance improvements that they knew iOS 4 could not deliver. According to the lawsuit [PDF], "Apple has falsely, intentionally and repeatedly represented that iOS 4, was a significant upgrade for the functionality of all iPhone devices, when in fact... iOS 4 is a substantial 'downgrade' for earlier iPhone devices and renders many of them virtually useless 'iBricks.'" The fundamental problem that Wofford and her lawyers highlight here is the fact that users can't downgrade without jailbreaking and voiding their warranties. "The iOS4 'upgrade' has essentially curtailed usefulness of the 3G/3GS devices," the lawsuit continues, "and left consumers, like Wofford, without any ability to restore the device to its prior acceptable functionality.

    If the case is found in the plaintiff's favor, Apple will be facing false advertising charges and violation of California's Unfair Competition Act, and may end up having to pay restitution and damages. In addition, the court may order that Apple provide a way for users to downgrade, or protect jailbreakers' warranty writes. The filing also states that Wofford intends to ask a judge to grant class action status to her lawsuit in order to provide benefits for more iPhone 3G and 3GS users that suffered from the problem.

    Source: Wired
    This article was originally published in forum thread: "iBricks:" iPhone 3G User Sues Apple Over iOS 4.0 started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 134 Comments
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      The reason Apple doesn't want you to know how to downgrade is because their updates are for a reason. They add new features and while adding new features what they don't tell you they are doing is patching security holes or glitches in older firmware because nobody wants to hear that their current software is buggy even though we know every single iteration of every single piece of software ever created has bugs and updates merely reduce the number of bugs or make them slightly less dangerous.

      The phone runs slower because more memory hungry software has been installed that also serves a positive purpose. Remember the PDF font explot that Comex used for JailbreakMe? If you didn't update(or if you were jailbroken and you didn't install the patch) then your phone was susceptible to attacks.

      I doubt she ever bothered to find out if she could downgrade or even Googled it because if she did then she would have come across a vast plethora of information on how to downgrade.
      I can easily install outdated versions of Mac OS, etc., so I don't see where your argument has any merit. How is iOS any different?
    1. blplunk's Avatar
      blplunk -
      Quote Originally Posted by madon View Post
      Any chance of reposting that in a way that makes sense in English?

      The content of my original post still stands, yes the 3G has performance issues, but no, you're not trapped on it and you can roll back to an earlier version without worrying about signing.

      Thus 3G users are not forced to use it, it's a choice (And at least they have a choice, 2G iPhones don't even have an option)
      They might not be forced to update, but a lot of apps stop working if you're not on the IOS4. Therefore if they want to use their apps, they update. It is "somewhat" forced. IMHO
    1. blplunk's Avatar
      blplunk -
      I bought my IPhone 4 because of slow performance on my 3G after the update. I could have downgraded the firmware, but liked the features of IOS 4. So it was a choice to upgrade, but it definitely slowed my 3G way down!
    1. GmAz's Avatar
      GmAz -
      I hope Apple falls for this one. I decided to get a DroidX and was going to sell my iPhone 3GS. My wife upgraded her 3G and it was so SO bad, she ended up taking my 3GS and the 3G was useless. Worse yet, the 3GS has slow down issue after a couple days of normal use. She has to restart her phone just to get it working fast enough to use again. This is typical Apple. **** up old equipment so people buy new equipment. One reason why I ditched the iPhone...and am so happy I did.
    1. dotFIVE's Avatar
      dotFIVE -
      Quote Originally Posted by GmAz View Post
      I hope Apple falls for this one. I decided to get a DroidX and was going to sell my iPhone 3GS. My wife upgraded her 3G and it was so SO bad, she ended up taking my 3GS and the 3G was useless. Worse yet, the 3GS has slow down issue after a couple days of normal use. She has to restart her phone just to get it working fast enough to use again. This is typical Apple. **** up old equipment so people buy new equipment. One reason why I ditched the iPhone...and am so happy I did.

      Don't know what you had installed, but I have 4.1 and a bunch of themes/tweaks on my 3GS and it runs flawlessly.

      Sent from my iPhone using ModMyi
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      Quote Originally Posted by GmAz View Post
      She has to restart her phone just to get it working fast enough to use again. This is typical Apple.

      It's recommended that you restart your phone daily anyways.



      Sent from my iPhone using ModMyi
    1. EskimoRuler's Avatar
      EskimoRuler -
      Quote Originally Posted by crankz1 View Post
      Hopefully the judge has a 3G...
      I know right
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Could a judge actually award monetary compensation for this or could Apple just offer to roll their firmware back to 3.x if they visit an Apple store or find some other way to remedy it? The reason I don't think a judge will award much money if at all is because Apple didn't state that your phone would run as fast or faster with the 4.0 update. They just stated that you would gain some new features and fix some security holes. Also, technically speaking, no damage was done that cannot be easily undone. Makes me wonder how many 3GS owners will want their software rolled back to 3.1 or 3.0 just to regain those SHSH blobs for TinyUmbrella since Apple otherwise won't sign them unlike the 3G which doesn't require signing.

      Oh man if that happens I'm going to jump on that so fast

      Quote Originally Posted by mortopher View Post
      It's recommended that you restart your phone daily anyways.
      you must be a former blackberry user. fortunately, we don't have to do daily battery pulls with our iphones.
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      you must be a former blackberry user. fortunately, we don't have to do daily battery pulls with our iphones.
      Never owned a Blackberry.
    1. ronfin44's Avatar
      ronfin44 -
      Quote Originally Posted by unison999 View Post
      Obviously it did or else you would not say decline to society when in actuality it is helping it out. You are the moron.

      Clever slips your grasp.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ronfin44 View Post
      Clever slips your grasp.
      None of your post showed any sign of intelligence, so there is nothing to grasp when it is coming from you.
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Quote Originally Posted by mortopher View Post
      Never owned a Blackberry.
      It's ok. If I weren't a phone whore then I wouldn't admit to it either.
    1. Bookreader's Avatar
      Bookreader -
      Just read this and enjoyed some of the posts. I have a 3G, I'm aware of Jailbreaking and I do read peoples posts before doing anything to my device. I not the most knowlegable person but I know how to search.

      However not all users are this aware in Japan. They just press update when its offered. For those users who do and then encounter problems there is not much they can do.

      If its a hardware problem the shop just replaces the device or sends it back for repair. If software they sometimes remind us that we didnt pay for that.

      The software is a part of the service they offer and just like with most pc updates the terms say we cant be held responsible for any problems caused by updating. This statement or something similar is in most software contracts I believe. Please correct me if I'm wrong on this.

      We tend to get the choice with these PC updates though unless its set to automatic install. With itunes on your PC this choice is not so simple for the average layman. They dont know exactly what to do. The manuals dont tell all.

      Maybe sueing is a good idea, maybe not. Its woffords choice. Here its not an easy option. For myself and many of my friends who dont want to jailbreak I prefer a better way and thats for apple to provide an option on itunes when updating to be able to choose which software to install.

      I.E press update it asks which OS you want. The OS dosent need to be stored by Appple on some server just in the itunes backup location on our PCs.

      If this case of woffords highlights this simple issue and Apple listens then its done its job. Nothing changes till someone says so or makes a stand.

      Wofford's complaint that Apple urged users of older phones to upgrade, promising performance improvements is what most companies say. Exactly how it improves and what is lost is not often said. That they knew iOS 4 could not deliver for me is the bigger issue and also difficult to prove I think.

      If Wofford can prove this and get some money out of the company thats okay with me. People tend to remeber these issues more when money is involved. Those cases where its not are soon forgotten. To ask for a lot would make it stand out just like the macdonalds case mentioned in an earlier post. (Now they say its hot when I buy a coffee) Asking for a small amount is also good because people wonder why its low and then talk about it too.
    1. cpkirkley's Avatar
      cpkirkley -
      The amount of arrogance in this thread on both sides is pretty disgusting.

      If Apple/AT&T is selling the 3g in any iteration, new and/or refurbed, and still requiring prospective buyers to buy into the same subsidiary contract as one of the new phones, then the level of support for the 3g should be absolutely the same as the newer phone.

      Those of you throwing out the buy a new phone already thing are buying into the argument for all the wrong reasons. This has nothing to do with the amount of money one is willing to spend on the product. This has everything to do with the fact that the new software is basically mandatory because of Apple's policies. while you dont HAVE to upgrade to the new OS - You are missing key functionality updates, security patches, etc. It's like an XBOX live or PSN update. Sure you can skip out of updating, but now you can't play online anymore.

      Look at it this way, what if the new slim 360 had some perks built into it (it does, actually, lol) that arent available on the old white ones. The firmware released for both iterations is the same, but the framerate of games on the old 360 is halved when using the new firmware. Naturally people who own the old 360 are either A) not going to update, which really isnt a viable option because you wont be able to play online anymore, or B) ask for a way to get back to where their games play properly.

      You take the B route, but Microsoft tells you that now that you've updated, you cant go back to the old one. But you can buy a new 250GB slim for 399. Who's right here? Even though the white ones may not be in warranty anymore, the fact that Microsoft made them (via policy) update their machines should place them under the umbrella of support.

      Apple has every obligation to support the older devices as long as they are releasing updates for it and allowing ATT to sell refurbed ones. In allowing phones that dont have the chops for the new software to run said new software, IMO they've opened themselves up to this lawsuit.
    1. Simon's Avatar
      Simon -
      Quote Originally Posted by cpkirkley View Post
      The amount of arrogance in this thread on both sides is pretty disgusting.

      If Apple/AT&T is selling the 3g in any iteration, new and/or refurbed, and still requiring prospective buyers to buy into the same subsidiary contract as one of the new phones, then the level of support for the 3g should be absolutely the same as the newer phone.

      Those of you throwing out the buy a new phone already thing are buying into the argument for all the wrong reasons. This has nothing to do with the amount of money one is willing to spend on the product. This has everything to do with the fact that the new software is basically mandatory because of Apple's policies. while you dont HAVE to upgrade to the new OS - You are missing key functionality updates, security patches, etc. It's like an XBOX live or PSN update. Sure you can skip out of updating, but now you can't play online anymore.

      Look at it this way, what if the new slim 360 had some perks built into it (it does, actually, lol) that arent available on the old white ones. The firmware released for both iterations is the same, but the framerate of games on the old 360 is halved when using the new firmware. Naturally people who own the old 360 are either A) not going to update, which really isnt a viable option because you wont be able to play online anymore, or B) ask for a way to get back to where their games play properly.

      You take the B route, but Microsoft tells you that now that you've updated, you cant go back to the old one. But you can buy a new 250GB slim for 399. Who's right here? Even though the white ones may not be in warranty anymore, the fact that Microsoft made them (via policy) update their machines should place them under the umbrella of support.

      Apple has every obligation to support the older devices as long as they are releasing updates for it and allowing ATT to sell refurbed ones. In allowing phones that dont have the chops for the new software to run said new software, IMO they've opened themselves up to this lawsuit.
      Hmm I kinda agree with your view. Apple did the right thing by not putting any updates out for iPhone 2g. Their mistake was not doing the same for the 3G since they are essentially running the same hardware. But since they did they should be obligated to fix the issue.
    1. sunshinejenn03's Avatar
      sunshinejenn03 -
      Quote Originally Posted by cheveli View Post
      Exact same thing i was thinking. Time moves forward and so does tech. The phone is 3 years old, im pretty sure your contract is up for upgrade already
      No it's not. It's not even 2 1/2 years old. The iPhone 3G was released on 7/11/2008. iOS 4.0 was released 6/21/2010. That's 1 year and 11 months after the iPhone 3G was released. So in less than 2 years, Apple basically rendered their own tech nearly obsolete.

      Now, this doesn't affect me...I upgrade every year and sell my old one. But it really sucks for those folks who aren't the primary account holder on their AT&T lines, or didn't purchase them on launch day (for instance, my roommate bought his in March 2009 and had to upgrade last month because he couldn't stand his 3G's lag after the 4.0 upgrade anymore), or use T-Mobile and can't afford to just fork over $700 every year for a new phone.
    1. Blazing angel's Avatar
      Blazing angel -
      [ame=http://www.ipodtouchfans.com/forums/showthread.php?t=224341]Speed Up Your iPhone/iPod by Removing Launch Daemons - iPod touch Fans forum - iPod, iPhone and iPad[/ame]

      #G owners. Do this. it really helped me
    1. CynicalDriver's Avatar
      CynicalDriver -
      I didn't read the replies yet, but I will be watching this very closely! My 3G got bricked by the 4.0 update process, which I was able to slightly recover from.

      The problem was that the phone would then freeze for as much as 20 minutes just trying to do basic things like unlocking, calling, changing location in "maps," and pressing play in the iPod app.

      I was forced to stand in a line for 7 hours to hoping that I would be able to get the i4 on release day. Had I known that my 3G would become almost useless for anything other than a glorified mp3 player, I would have pre-ordered the i4 and NOT attempted to get iOS4

      Normally I would have waited until September to upgrade, because that's my account renewal month, and the lines/stock issues that Apple has at EVERY product launch would not have been an issue.

      On a side note: Apple purposely produces less inventory than it needs so that it can artificially maintain their over-bloated prices, much the same way that people buy games systems only to sell them for huge profits on e-bay to people who are desperate enough to pay it.

      That's my opinion anyway. There's no reason why anyone should have to "camp" for a new phone like it's a papal visit!

      To the idiots who will think "you could have bought a different phone.":

      Other phones do not do what the iPhone does with anywhere near the same ease, reliability, or price. I don't need a GPS, iPod, cell phone, netbook, camera, flashlight, etc... to do my job. I just need ONE device, the iPhone, which saves me hundreds and hundreds of dollars that I don't have to spend on other devices and/or services.

      Also, I'd rather not have to go through the hassle of converting hundreds of dollars worth of iTunes music to mp3, or repurchasing essential apps for Android or some other weak phone OS.
    1. joecef's Avatar
      joecef -
      would it really be that hard to add a downgrade button to itunes? they dont want you to be able to downgrade they wont you buy a new phone!
      not everyone researches on the internet what they are buying. so if you get a second hand 3g and are forced to update it there should be a downgrade option... very simple really
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Quote Originally Posted by cpkirkley View Post
      Look at it this way, what if the new slim 360 had some perks built into it (it does, actually, lol) that arent available on the old white ones. The firmware released for both iterations is the same, but the framerate of games on the old 360 is halved when using the new firmware. Naturally people who own the old 360 are either A) not going to update, which really isnt a viable option because you wont be able to play online anymore, or B) ask for a way to get back to where their games play properly.

      You take the B route, but Microsoft tells you that now that you've updated, you cant go back to the old one. But you can buy a new 250GB slim for 399. Who's right here? Even though the white ones may not be in warranty anymore, the fact that Microsoft made them (via policy) update their machines should place them under the umbrella of support.
      not exactly the same and here is why: your iphone won't stop making calls or texts if you choose not to update. simple as that. everything will work exactly as it did before if you choose the "cancel" button when it asks if you want to download and install new software.

      another note, i am very surprised people don't research more and just blindly update **** without finding out what it will do. every single time an update comes out even if its just a .0.1 or .1 version or whatever it is i always wait and read what people are saying on the forums about it. like many others, i have put a lot of time and effort into the jailbreaking and SSH mods to my iphone and i don't like jumping through that hoop every time a new version comes out. right now my 3gS runs fine on 4.0 and i don't notice any performance issues but i'll give 4.2 some time before upgrading to make sure it really works and to give me adequate time to make sure my jailbroken apps will still work. i just dont understand why people don't put more thought into these decisions knowing apple's history with not being able to downgrade.

      furthermore please show me documentation that says a company is required to support older hardware when newer hardware is available. just because you are required to update doesn't mean microsoft is required to support your hardware. that might not make sense so let me explain it this way. the reason microsoft doesn't care if you update if you never go on xbox live is because older hardware may be more taxing on the xbox live network and these updates are most likely created for 2 reasons: to patch security holes, and improve efficiency. if your old xbox is taxing the network because it isn't as fast and efficient as a new one they have every right to block you from playing unless you update. microsoft has a loyalty to make sure their users have the fastest and most bug-free experience possible and all joking aside they at least try to accomplish that. if you never go on xbox live then this is all irrelevant and updates don't mean anything to you.