Apple is under investigation by Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (AGCM), Italy’s “Antitrust Authority”, for not complying with consumer laws that require companies operating in the country to offer free two year warranties for electronic products.
Apple, which sells its products with a one year warranty, is required under EU law to protect buyers with a minimum of two years protection on all consumer electronics, which includes its iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and iPod devices. Instead of this, Apple pushes a paid warranty service with its AppleCare service, going against regulations in Italy.
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Basically, Apple is saying consumers in the European Union should pay to get a two-year warranty guaranteed by consumer laws anyway. Apple on its part, the publication claims (through a poor Google translation), says the one-year warranty is on top of warranties provided by local laws.
The AGCM has said that proceedings against Apple started three weeks ago and hopes to make a decision about what Apple will have to do with 120 days, which works out to be in late August. If Apple is found guilty, a maximum fine of €500,000 can be imposed as consumers seek civil damages against the company.