Apple faces legal onslaught from disgruntled iPhone owners


apple-iphone-lawsuits.jpgGetting sued by your own customers isn’t an ideal corporate strategy, it’s fair to say. Yet Apple is facing the threat of several legal actions over the iPhone, from unhappy owners of the device.

For example, New Yorker Dongmei Li is sueing Apple, AT&T Wireless and Steve Jobs himself for price discrimination, underselling, discrimination in rebates, and deceptive actions.

It’s because she could only get a 4GB iPhone on launch day, then saw Apple drop the price of the 8GB model by $200 and discontinue the 4GB version. Dongmei isn’t the only unhappy iPhone owner though…

Users on Apple’s own iPhone forums are rumbling about a possible class action lawsuit over Apple’s “refusal to service” users with unlocked iPhones, or iPhones with unauthorised third-party applications installed on them.

Apple might not be worried about the specific lawsuits – the company has half-decent lawyers after all – but it should be worried about the growing sense of dissatisfaction among iPhone early adopters over the company’s actions.

In particular, the decision to try and keep iPhone a closed system is giving rival handset manufacturers a stick to beat Apple with, if they’re clever enough to latch onto their openness as a marketing tactic.

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Stuart Dredge
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