October 31, 2013
Last month, a proposed settlement for a class action lawsuit against Apple and AT&T was granted preliminary approval. Now, the settlement appears to be nearing final approval as claim forms have been made available to class members. As we noted in our earlier report on the matter, the settlement concerns a bait-and-switch scheme allegedly pulled by Apple and AT&T on some customers who bought the 3G-enabled version of the first-generation iPad:
An unlimited data plan was originally promised by the iDevice maker and the U.S. carrier to customers who each paid an extra $130 to access 3G on the iPad model in question. They were also guaranteed the ability to switch back and forth between the unlimited data plan and cheaper yet limited data plans at no surcharge. But the companies later canceled both the unlimited data plan and the accompanying flexible option.Now, as noted by MacRumors, the companies have been required to offer separate compensations to eligible class members: a cash payment from Apple and a data plan benefit from AT&T. Apple is set to provide a $40 cash payment to each class member in the U.S. who purchased the original 3G-capable iPad on or before June 7, 2010. As for AT&T, it's set to give data plan discounts to each class member in the U.S. who purchased the original 3G-capable iPad on or before June 7, 2010, and who have not signed up for any AT&T 3G data plan for the device at any time. Under AT&T's data plan benefit, each eligible class member can sign up for an AT&T 5GB iPad data plan for a discounted monthly rate of $30/month, instead of the normal rate of $50/month, for up to one year. Eligible class members may submit a claim for Apple's cash payment, a claim for AT&T's data plan benefit, or separate claims for both. Claim forms may be filled out here. The deadline for submitting claims is Feb. 3, 2014. For more information on the settlement, read the detailed class notice here.