San Francisco, CA: A preliminary settlement has been reached in a consumer fraud class action lawsuit pending against Apple Inc and AT&T Mobility LLC, over an alleged bait-and-switch scheme for iPad 3G data plans.
The class action, entitled Apple and AT&T iPad Unlimited Data Plan Litigation, Case No. 10-cv-02553 RMW, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, alleged that Apple and AT&T promoted unlimited 3G data plans for iPads but then stopped offering those plans and replaced them with a tiered model. The defendants claimed the change to the data plans was necessary to do band width issues. The lawsuit alleges the defendants conspired in a bait-and-switch scheme, which the companies used to lure consumers into purchasing the 3G iPads.
The tentative settlement, granted preliminary approval by US District Judge Ronald M. Whyte, stipulates that Apple will pay $40 to all consumers in the United States who purchased a 3G-enabled iPad on or before June 7, 2010. Further, iPad owners who did not opt into the AT&T data plan will receive a $20 monthly discount on a 5GB plan for up to 12 months.
A final fairness hearing of the preliminary iPad 3G settlement will be held in February 2014. According to court orders, notices of the iPad unlimited data plan settlement will be mailed by November 5, 2013. And class members will then have until December 20 to object, opt in or opt out of the proposed settlement. Eligible class members can submit claims forms up to February 3, 2014. Instructions on filing a claim will be published when they are made available.