Feeds

AppleT&T faces twin texting suits

'Mouseprint disclaimer' insufficient

High performance access to file storage

Apple and AT&T are facing a pair of strikingly similar class-action lawsuits charging that the companies misrepresented the iPhone's ability to send and receive MMS messages when upgraded to iPhone Software 3.0.

Reports of the first lawsuit, filed in the US District Court in the Eastern District of Louisiana, began crowding the web yesterday. And today, AppleInsider turned up another, filed in the US District Court in the Southern District of Illinois.

Both suits go into great detail to document Apple's marketing of iPhone Software 3.0 as MMS-capable as being deceptive and describe the reason for AT&T's failure to provide such support being because "AT&T has never upgraded its towers so as to support the functionality necessary for MMS."

Interestingly, the language in the two complaints that describes the failure of Apple and AT&T to get their MMS acts together is essentially identical - and identically snarky.

After detailing the AT&T Answer Center's unhelpful advice on MMS support - "iPhone does not support sending, or receiving picture, audio, or video multimedia messages" - the suits contend that "The 'Fix' was essentially to say 'tough luck.'"

When an MMS message is sent to the iPhone (or any non-MMS-capable device), the suits complain, the Answer Center provides a URL and and advises that "To view the MMS message, please access the website from a computer." This displeases the plaintiffs. "Incredibly," the suits marvel, "AT&T was directing customers interested in MMS to go to a computer to view the message."

Neither are the plaintiffs satisfied with Apple and AT&T's explanation for the missing MMS support. "The only excuse offered by AT&T and Apple is a mouseprint disclaimer on the website, in barely readable font," the suits assert, "which reads 'MMS Support from AT&T coming in late summer.'"

Both suits have named plaintiffs - Christopher Carbine, Ryan Casey, and Lisa Mauer in Louisiana and Tim Meeker in Illinois - and both seek to extend the suit to cover all purchasers of 3G and 3GS iPhones purchased in each jurisdiction.

The Louisiana case claims that the affected class would include "at least 10,000 individuals." The Illinois case move the decimal point one place to the right and ups the class to 100,000.

Both suits also claim that the "amount of controversy" in the case is over $5m - although the Illinois case tacks onto that figure "interests and costs." Both suits seek compensatory damages, and the Illinois suit adds "punitive damages in an amount which is fair and reasonable."

We can only assume that Apple and AT&T saw this coming from the moment when Apple introduced the iPhone 3GS and iPhone Software 3.0 at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference on June 8th and revealed that AT&T wouldn't support MMS until "later this summer." After all, we Americans are a litigious lot - especially when the rest of the world gets something which we are denied.

What may have come as a surprise, though, is that two identical suits popped up it two different courts mere days from one another.

There are 94 US District Courts in the American judicial system. It will be interesting to keep our eye on the remaining 92. ®

SANS - Survey on application security programs

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
Skype pimps pro-level broadcast service
Playing Cat and Mouse with the media
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app
Jibber-jabbering addicts turfed out just as Zuck warned
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.