US iPhone 4 owners who sued Apple over the handset's problems with dropped calls are being offered a small pay-out or a free bumper case as compensation, it has emerged.
Issues with the positioning of the last-generation iPhone 4’s antenna badly affected reception when the smartphone was held a certain way. Tech wags christened the problem 'antennagate' and cited it as evidence that Apple's long-held rep for developing kit that 'just works' was finally showing cracks.
The matter prompted 18 lawsuits on behalf of thousands of aggrieved owners in the US, who claimed that Apple had misrepresented and concealed “material information in the marketing, advertising, sale, and servicing of its iPhone 4, particularly as it relates to the quality of the mobile phone antenna and reception and related software”.
Today all the class action lawsuits pending have been resolved. Under the terms of the agreement, Apple has offered those affected either $15 or a bumper case, which purportedly improves the device’s network reception.
The claimants will receive notice of the judgement and their entitlement via email and must stake their claim within 120 days of the missive’s receipt.
A website iPhone4Settlement.com website is also being set up to provide information about claims.
Although widely reported in the tech press and mainstream media which ran numerous screeds about the fact that the handset didn’t fulfil its primary function as a phone, the antennagate scandal did little to dent sales of the iPhone 4.