Apple starts sending out compensation payments for iPhone 'batterygate' claim

iPhone 7
The iPhone 7 was one of the phones involved (Image credit: Future)

You may remember that back in 2020, Apple settled a class action lawsuit in the US by agreeing to compensate iPhone users for deliberately slowing down (or throttling) performance on older iPhones. Now those payments are being sent out.

As reported by MacRumors and others, people who filed a claim for compensation from Apple are now getting their payments of $92.17. The official website for the litigation confirms that the last appeal was dismissed in December 2023, and that therefore payments can be issued from January 2024.

The payments can total up to $500 million (about £393 million or AU$746 million), depending on the number of claimants. Don't expect any money if you haven't already registered a claim though – the deadline for applying for compensation from Apple was back on October 6, 2020.

To be eligible, you had to have been a US-based owner of an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, and/or SE device running iOS 10.2.1 or later before December 21, 2017, and/or a US-based owner of an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus device running iOS 11.2 or later before December 21, 2017.

Paying up

As you may remember, the lawsuit was originally filed all the way back in December 2017, after Apple admitted that iOS slows down iPhone performance as batteries get older, in order to ensure device stability – a practice it didn't tell users about.

Apple's reasoning was that it kept older iPhones running for longer, but users weren't happy about the lack of transparency: a sizable number of people felt they were being pushed into upgrading their iPhones, or having to order an expensive battery replacement for them, sooner than they otherwise would.

This kind of performance management is still in place today on iOS 17 – only now it's fully detailed and explained, and users have the option of turning it off. Apple has always insisted it was in the right, and says that it only agreed to settle the lawsuit in order to avoid a lengthy and expensive court case.

If you did get your compensation claim in before the deadline in 2020, check your bank account – you may well now have a 2024 bonus payment from Apple, almost four years after the settlement agreement was reached.

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David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.