Apple agreed to pay $53 million to settle a class action lawsuit that alleged the company failed to honor warranties on malfunctioning iPhones and iPod Touches, according to Wired. Apple reportedly rejected the consumer warranty claims based on the belief that the relevant malfunctions resulted from water damage which is not covered by Apple’s one-year and extended two-year warranty plans.
The iPhones and iPods presented for warranty claims included a white indicator tape designed by 3M which turns pink or red when contacted with water. Apple relied on the indicator tapes to determine claim validity, but according to 3M, the manufacturer of the indicator tapes, humidity can also cause the tapes to turn pink. Since the tape was deemed unreliable, Apple chose to offer the settlement.
Consumers who purchased Apple’s first iPhone up to its 3GS model, as well as the second and third-generation iPod Touch are covered pursuant to the settlement. Wired reported that settlement payouts will be around $200, but could be reduced or increased depending on the number of claimants.