Today, a Seattle-based law firm followed through on its promise to bring a class action lawsuit against apple for “Error 53” which effectively bricks iPhones during iOS updates if third-party companies replaced the iPhone’s home button.
The U.S. is a litigious country and Apple has a lot of money
The iPhone maker was never going to get away with “Error 53” in the United States. A U.S.-based company, no matter where most of its cash reserves, are is always going to face a lawsuit when something like this happens as sure as sharks are drawn to blood in the water.
If you’re reading this, you are likely already aware of what “Error 53” is, if not here is a refresher piece from last week.
As promised, Seattle-based law firm Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala (PCVA) followed through on its threats to bring a class action lawsuit against Apple.
While the law firm is clearly in it for the money, I can, to a point, understand the frustration of people that have been affected by “Error 53.” And until today, Apple had been pretty silent with regards to consumer recourse.
Today, Apple finally released a statement on Error 53:
We take customer security very seriously and Error 53 is the result of security checks designed to protect our customers. iOS checks that the Touch ID sensor in your iPhone or iPad correctly matches your device’s other components. If iOS finds a mismatch, the check fails and Touch ID, including for Apple Pay use, is disabled. This security measure is necessary to protect your device and prevent a fraudulent Touch ID sensor from being used. If a customer encounters Error 53, we encourage them to contact Apple Support.
That won’t make the lawsuit go away
Rather, of course it won’t, the smell of money is in the air and people are angry, this is what lawyers do.
Specifically, PCVA attorney Darrell Cochran, who is leading the Error 53 lawsuit. Mr. Cochran is claiming that the security argument holds no water given the fact that Error 53 only kicks in with on iOS upgrade or installation. Which, is a weak point but I’ll let him give you his legalese: (When is it suppose to kick in, it should shut your down your phone and check your home button for repair arbitrarily?)
“No materials we’ve seen from Apple ever show a disclosure that your phone would self-destruct if you download new software onto a phone,” Cochran said. “If Apple wants to kill your phone under any set of circumstances and for any reason, it has to make it crystal clear to its customers before the damage is done. The error code 53 signals the death of the phone, and Apple’s response has been to say ‘you have no options; it’s not covered under warranty, and you have to buy a new phone.'”
So? Apple’s a dick, give me money? Lawyers.
Apple is no stranger to lawsuits both as plaintiff and a defendant and always will be. Apple sues Samsung for this, Samsung sues Apple for that. Both companies’ lawyers scream and fight but while that’s going on, the two companies have already signed a deal to have Samsung Display provide screens for its new iPhones.
The University of Wisconsin wins a suit against Apple, that doesn’t mean engineers graduating from the school wouldn’t love to leave the Wisconsin snow and take a job in Cupertino, California.
This seems frivolous, but as a class action suit, well, it’s what lawyers do.