France Opens Investigation into Apple Over Planned Obsolescence

For those of us living in the good ol’ United States, the free market, laissez-faire kind of capitalism we enjoy comes with some serious downsides. Minimal regulation (and getting more minimal by the day) means that companies that achieve monopoly status can get away with just about anything, and we’ve accepted that as par for the course.

Not the case in France. French authorities have opened an investigation against tech giant Apple in order to prove that the company has designed its iPhones with planned obsolescence in mind. In other words, purposefully making your iPhone stop working after a certain amount of time, prompting you to ditch it for a newer model. Planned obsolescence is illegal in France as of 2015, when the French government declared that all appliance manufacturers in the country would have to declare the lifespan of a product upon releasing it, and that manufacturers would have to repair all appliances for free within the first two years of a product’s life.

The French consumer rights watchdog group HOP have filed a lawsuit against Apple as well.

We’ll see how the verdict turns out, but it sure is refreshing to see that amidst a flood of deregulation, France continues to hold to its values of citizens over corporations.