Why did a Brazilian court slap $20 million fine on Apple over iPhones?

Published on Oct 14, 2022 11:26 AM IST

During the launch of iPhone 12, the first iPhone model to bereft from a charger, Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, said that there are already 2 billion power adapters in the world, and shipping new adapters with the iPhone 12 only compounds waste.

In October 2020, Apple announced it would discontinue offering outlet chargers with new iPhones.(REUTERS)
In October 2020, Apple announced it would discontinue offering outlet chargers with new iPhones.(REUTERS)
By | Edited by Aryan Prakash

Charger-related issues have become a headache for Apple. On Thursday, a Brazilian judge levied a $20 million (around 164 crores) fine on the tech giant for selling iPhones without chargers. Pulling up Apple, the court called the practice abusive that compels customers to buy an additional product, reports AFP.

In October 2020, Apple announced it would discontinue offering outlet chargers with new iPhones in an effort to help minimise electronic trash.

The appealable judgement came after Apple was hit with a separate fine of over $2.5 million (around 20 crores) by Brazil’s justice ministry in September for the same offence and prohibited from selling its iPhone 12 and 13 models without chargers.

In response to a case filed by the Brazilian Consumers’ Association, a São Paulo civil court judge imposed the fresh penalties of 100 million Reais (around $20 million) as damages.

The judge ordered Apple to supply chargers to all users in Brazil who purchased iPhone models 12 or 13 in the past two years, and also to ensure charger comes in all new purchases.

During the launch of iPhone 12, the first iPhone model to bereft from a charger, Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, said that there are already 2 billion power adapters in the world, and shipping new adapters with the iPhone 12 only compounds waste. She argued that more and more customers are switching to wireless charging.

However, in the ruling, Judge Caramuru Afonso Francisco noted that the move effectively “requires consumers to purchase a second product in order for the first to work,” the AFP report stated.

Last week, the European Parliament passed a law obliging all smartphones, tablets and cameras to use USB-C ports as the single charger standard by 2024.

It was also reported that in the wake of this law, Apple is now aiming to shift from the Lightning charging port on the iPhone and other devices to USB-C.

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