On Friday, our firm, Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff, published a letter to all iPhone 4 consumers who contacted us regarding the reception problems they’ve experienced with Apple’s controversial new cellular phone.
Today Apple announced that it will take the first steps toward making things right since the introduction of the iPhone 4. After we announced our investigation into the matter, our firm was shocked by the initial overwhelming response from iPhone 4 users who reported reception problems, and puzzled by Apple’s unfortunate response–“hold it differently” or “buy a bumper.” Today, Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs announced that the company will apparently provide free “bumper” cases, or equivalent third-party cases, for all iPhone 4 owners, and reimburse customers who already bought “bumpers” for their new phones. Full refunds for undamaged phones will apparently be available for 30 days after purchase, and there will be no fees for early contract termination for returned phones. This process is supposed to be unveiled on Apple’s website next week, and we will let you know when you can begin applying for your cases or refunds.
While we still believe that Apple misguided consumers by marketing a flawed product, we are pleased with their announcement. It reveals that the class action mechanism is effective at holding businesses accountable for their products.
Many questions remain, and in our opinion Apple sold a flawed phone, and marketed it as if it were flawless. However, we are glad and thankful that, by hearing from all of you, by filing the first case against Apple for the iPhone 4 in the Northern District of California, and by pursuing an appropriate remedy for consumers, we put the pressure on Apple to concede, however reluctantly, that Apple customers deserve a better deal. It remains to be seen what will happen to the many cases that have been filed against Apple, but today I think we can say that the system is working. All of you recognized this problem long before Apple acknowledged there was one, which allowed us to act quickly and decisively. Now it appears Apple is starting to make things right, thanks in part to your assistance.
We will continue to keep consumers updated about the case, as well as the status of Apple’s refund process.