updated 12:20 pm EDT, Mon October 1, 2007
iPhone owner mulls lawsuit
Anger over the hack-breaking v1.1.1 iPhone update is fueling talk of a possible lawsuit, accounts say. A poster by the name of "myndex" has used multiple forum posts to seek interest in a possible class action suit against Apple, arguing that the company should be required to service iPhones under warranty, even if they have been modified or used in tandem with unofficial software. Currently, Apple may refuse to handle such products.
myndex includes three classes within the theoretical suit. The first is people who have used third-party software (such as iPhoneDrive) to access the flash storage on an iPhone, without having altered firmware or installed a program on the device; the second includes people who have installed third-party apps in the past, but who have since restored their phones to factory defaults, and are only suffering from hardware problems such as bad touchscreens. Finally, the third class would encircle those who have unlocked the iPhone for other carriers. This is legal under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, but discouraged by Apple, which states on the iPhone's box that an AT&T contract is necessary.
For reasons unstated, the original lawsuit post has been deleted from Apple's official iPhone support forum, having since been mirrored on other sites (see below). The company has taken a hard stance against any manipulation of its product; technicians are reportedly refusing to service phones on which users have merely attempted to install software, and Apple represenative Jennifer Bowcock has said that "If the damage [requiring repair] was due to use of an unauthorized software application, voiding their warranty, they should purchase a new iPhone."