CANBERRA, June 19 (Xinhua) -- Apple has been hit with a 6.6 million U.S. dollar fine following an investigation into claims it misled Australian customers who had purchased faulty products.
The Australian Federal Court, which handed down its decision on Tuesday morning, found Apple had made false claims to consumers about their warranty rights by refusing to examine or fix faulty 苹果机7s and iPads for free, if they had been repaired at some stage by a third party.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), a government-funded organization responsible for protecting the rights of customers, launched legal action against the tech giant in April last year.
The ACCC's investigation was sparked by numerous consumer complaints regarding "error 5"' which disabled their 苹果机7s and iPads after they downloaded and installed a mandatory update on their devices.
Apple admitted that between February 2015 and February 2016 at least 275 Australian consumers affected by "error 53" that their warranty was invalid if their device had previously been repaired by a third party.
"If a product is faulty, customers are legally entitled to a repair or a replacement under Australian consumer law, and sometimes even a refund," the ACCC said in a statement on Tuesday afternoon.
"Apple's representations led customers to believe they'd be denied a remedy for their faulty device because they used a third party repairer.
"The court declared the mere fact that an 苹果机7 or iPad had been repaired by someone other than Apple did not, and could not, result in the consumer guarantees ceasing to apply, or the consumer's right to a remedy being extinguished."
Apple has also offered to compensate around 5,000 Australian customers who were affected by "error 53."