Italy fines Apple $12 million over claims about waterproof iPhones

Italy’s antitrust agency on Monday announced that it had fined Apple roughly $12 million for deceptive marketing about its iPhones.

The Italian Competition Authority, or AGCM, said that Apple had advertised the iPhone 8 through iPhone 11 as being waterproof without making clear that that was only the case under specific conditions.

Additionally, Apple’s disclaimer that phones were not covered for liquid damage tricked consumers, the agency said.


Apple allegedly refused to provide support when phones were damaged by water.

A spokesperson for Apple declined to comment on the fine. The company has 60 days from the day it was notified of the fine to appeal the decision.

Apple has faced tougher enforcement from European agencies than their American counterparts. The AGCM fined Apple and Samsung roughly $15 million two years ago for forcing updates onto users’ phones that caused them to slow down.

France fined Apple $27 million earlier this year for capping the performance of phones with older batteries.

The company did agree to pay up to $500 million in an American class-action lawsuit this year centered on older phone models being slowed down intentionally, but regulators have been less aggressive.

That may change, however, on the heels of a report released this fall by Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee that alleges Apple stifled competition by using its App Store to discriminate against rivals.

–Updated at 11:48 a.m.

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