Apple hit with class-action lawsuit over cracking M1 MacBook screens

midian182

Posts: 7,162   +64
Staff member
What just happened? Apple will now have to deal with a class-action lawsuit over reports of its M1 MacBook screens cracking inexplicably. The world's largest company is being accused of false or deceptive marketing for the laptops, misconduct in customer support, and violation of consumer law.

The lawsuit was filed on Tuesday in the Northern District of California by law firm Bursor and Fisher. It follows last week's investigation into the cracking reports by Washington, DC-based Migliaccio & Rathod LLP, which also investigated the Surface Pro 4's screen flickering issues three years ago, but it seems another set of lawyers got there first.

The M1-powered MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro have been widely praised by reviewers and consumers, but it seems they're not perfect. Several users claim they opened their devices and discovered cracks on the screens that couldn't be explained. This Redditor says the LCD on their 13-inch M1 MacBook cracked inexplicably just a week after purchasing it. There have also been reports of black or vertical lines appearing on the screens for no apparent reason.

"The M1 MacBook is defective, as the screens are extraordinarily fragile, cracking, blacking out, or showing magenta, purple and blue lines and squares, or otherwise ceasing to function altogether," the suit reads.

The lawsuit states that Apple advertised the M1 MacBooks as being "premium [in] quality, reliability, and durability," despite allegedly knowing this wasn't true. It also claims that Apple's "rigorous testing" of the laptops should have revealed any faults and that the company "actively" hid the alleged defects from consumers.

The lawsuit goes on to accuse Apple of violating consumer law by refusing to repair the displays, even when they were under warranty. One customer was quoted $480 for a replacement screen, while another was told it would be $615. In many cases, Apple said the issue was caused by the customer and not a fault, meaning it wouldn't repair the laptop as it was considered accidental breakage.

The suit wants Apple to compensate the plaintiff for the cost of repairs and award others who have faced similar problems "reasonable attorney's fees and costs." It also asks the company to end its "false marketing" and that it "correct, repair, replace or otherwise rectify [its] unlawful, unfair, false and/or deceptive practices." The exact amount of damages will be identified during the requested jury trial.

h/t: MacRumors

Image credit: Nanain

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Uncle Al

Posts: 8,242   +7,013
Until the courts create a system of fines & penalties that significantly impact the profit line of these companies, it all gets written off as the ¨cost of doing business¨. Slap them with a fine that is equal to 25-50% of their annual revenue and you will most assuredly get their attention.
 

Dimitriid

Posts: 1,126   +2,141
It's curious that only Apple gets seemingly at least one of these per product cycle but I think it's not that hard to explain if you think about it a bit:

1) As @VitaliT alludes to: this is mostly a thing lawyers encourage. They're in the business of suing to get lots of money and the bigger the target the better so it's why most other smaller PC integrators and manufacturers are beneath their notice.

2) Apple is still mostly a consumer-facing company. Those other system integrators and competitors do have consumer *divisions* but most of their business is enterprise and those folks in both sides of the transaction probably have very strong contract previsions so it's far less likely

3) While I think it's very silly to pay for used Apple products, truth of the matter is that the secondary market and resell value for their products is much better: people who buy a macbook might not *plan* on selling it but they expect it to be de-valuated much more slower than other laptops so people become a lot more vigilant about manufacturing issues that could impact their resell value down the line

4) All of their positioning and marketing about being a premium brand is quite simply false: they're equivalent or worst in quality to any other laptop, they just happen to sell a lot more of them than any single competitor so manufacturing flaws or defects come about seemingly more frequently even if failure rates are about the same as any other laptop.
 

Nobina

Posts: 3,343   +3,436
Apple sells their devices at a premium to compensate because they know they will have to get some of that money back eventually when the class-action hits.
 

hahahanoobs

Posts: 3,712   +1,779
Apple products are the biggest scam going imo. I'm borderline thinking security is a scam in the sense of how companies are using it to get you to buy their stuff.

iMessage is the next biggest scam/joke if you ask me.

Ask yourself this:
If privacy is soooo important, why are users okay using encryption that only works across iPhones? Do iPhone users not have contacts with Android? Do they watch what they say when speaking to those users. Why not use an app that works on ALL their friends phones?

I'm gonna start calling Apple, Christina....
because there is always an Applegate.
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 2,724   +4,258
It's curious that only Apple gets seemingly at least one of these per product cycle but I think it's not that hard to explain if you think about it a bit:

1) As @VitaliT alludes to: this is mostly a thing lawyers encourage. They're in the business of suing to get lots of money and the bigger the target the better so it's why most other smaller PC integrators and manufacturers are beneath their notice.

2) Apple is still mostly a consumer-facing company. Those other system integrators and competitors do have consumer *divisions* but most of their business is enterprise and those folks in both sides of the transaction probably have very strong contract previsions so it's far less likely

3) While I think it's very silly to pay for used Apple products, truth of the matter is that the secondary market and resell value for their products is much better: people who buy a macbook might not *plan* on selling it but they expect it to be de-valuated much more slower than other laptops so people become a lot more vigilant about manufacturing issues that could impact their resell value down the line

4) All of their positioning and marketing about being a premium brand is quite simply false: they're equivalent or worst in quality to any other laptop, they just happen to sell a lot more of them than any single competitor so manufacturing flaws or defects come about seemingly more frequently even if failure rates are about the same as any other laptop.
I mean in a single modle you may be right, but overall apple is a drop int he bucket in terms of overall sales.

I think it has a lot mroe to do with apple's obcession with thinness and "premium" feel as opposed to making functional products. Their overheating, battery draining macbook pros, their hostility to consumer upgrades, soldered SSDS, ece come to mind.

Apple is just plain hostile to consumers maintaining their own stuff, and as a result gets a lot of attentionw hen something they make breaks because nobody can fix the things. If you could just get a replacement screen for $200 at any repair shop this'd be a much smaller story.