Apple has systems in place for a variety of tasks, some of which are designed to help keep devices running.
It sounds like one of those systems may be causing a bigger issue, at least if a new class action lawsuit filed against the company has any legs. As was first reported by MacRumors on Tuesday, after the publication was able to obtain the legal complaint against Apple, a customer is filing a class action lawsuit with the company over messages designed to alert users of a potentially harmful accessory.
Monica Emerson believes that Apple designed its software to prevent some charging accessories from working, or “specifically designed and programmed to reject, starting on November of 2016, old iPhone chargers from properly charging the iPhones”. According to the documentation, Emerson purchased an iPhone 7 in September 2016. The plaintiff says they used Apple’s first-party AC wall adapter, but in October 2017 it stopped working. At the time, a notification saying, “This accessory may not be supported” popped up, preventing it from working as it should.
“In or around October 2017, Plaintiff attempted to use her Apple Charger and received a message that read “This accessory may not be supported.” Thus, requiring that people buy a new charger for her iPhone. Upon learning this, Plaintiff felt ripped off, cheated, and violated by Defendant.”
Emerson says that the notification, and Apple’s systems, have made it so that thousands of customers out there in the wild have been forced to buy a new charging system so that they could refill their device’s battery on a regular basis. Total claims for the class action lawsuit are higher than $5 million. Emerson is charging Apple with a variety of complaints, including unfair business practices, outright fraud, false advertising, and other complaints that fall under California laws.
The specific notification is designed in part to let customers know that an accessory they are using is potentially dangerous to the Apple-branded device it is connected to. According to the complaint, Emerson says she used the first-party AC wall adapter and always did. However, it is unknown if Emerson also used Apple’s first party USB-to-Lightning cable to actually connect the phone to the charging device. If Emerson used a third-party cable, it’s definitely possible that the notification was working as it should.
It seems very unlikely that Apple issued a software update that would prevent its first-party accessories from working, especially with the system in question designed to flag potentially dangerous third-party options. However, that doesn’t mean that some false positives can crop up, or just issues in general. I don’t know about you, but I’ve only ever seen this notification pop up when I know I’ve been using a random third-party cable (usually in the car), and it’s never been an issue when using certified products through the Made for iPhone (MFi) program. What about you?
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