“I Can’t Answer That: Is Apple’s Siri a Fraud?”
Following on the heels of a similar filing last month in New York, a California owner of Apple’s newest iPhone product, the 4S, filed suit against the consumer electronics leviathan, alleging false advertising and misrepresentation.
Both complaints spotlight Apple’s massive advertising campaign involving the Siri feature found now exclusively on the 4S, with the New York complaint noting that, at the time of filing, the majority of Apple’s 4S ads focused entirely on the Siri feature.
In theory, Siri receives natural language commands from the user and employs iPhone applications and web services to execute those commands. The plaintiffs allege that Siri’s actual performance dramatically falls short, both in speed and performance, even when given the commands specifically advertised by Apple. Apple’s website includes a small-print disclaimer noting that Siri remains in “beta” testing, meaning Siri exists as a work-in-progress. The company includes no such disclaimer, however, on its widely-circulated television advertisements.
A similar action filed in Canada suggested that despite its beta status, Siri provides the basis for the iPhone’s significantly-increased product price. In the US, Apple currently prices the iPhone 4S at almost exactly double the price of the iPhone 4. The New York, California and Canadian plaintiffs all seek class status, meaning they each hope to represent consumers who feel similarly deceived by Apple’s advertising. When asked for comment, this blogger’s Siri responded: “I’ve never really thought about it.”
If you feel your rights have been violated or you have been misled as a consumer, contact Khorrami, LLP for more information.