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Apple Under Fire in EU Over Misleading AppleCare

Apple has already fined with a $1.2 million by Italy’s antitrust authority Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (AGCM) over misleading consumers on assistance services and warranties. Now the Cupertino-based company has been presented with a formal notice by the European Consumers’ Organization that asks the company for putting an immediate stop to its guarantees as they stand.

According to Bloomberg, the notice is sent in an email with respect to Directive 2005/29/EC concerning “unfair business-to-consumer commercial practices in the internal market.”

In fact the problem is related to the fact that the minimum warranty for products sold in the European Commission is by now two years. As a result, the commission claims that the company is misleading customers by encouraging them to purchase AppleCare warranties that extend coverage to two years, along with other benefits.

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Director General of the European Consumer Organization, Monique Goyens said in one of his statement, “In the EU, consumers are entitled to a minimum two-year legal guarantee. Consumers should not be misled and confused as to fundamental EU consumer rights because a company wants to sell their commercial warranty services.”

There are different consumer organizations that have brought their complaints to EUC or some even sent letters of complaint to Apple as well related to the warranties, said Goyens. He further adds that the case is vital due to the fact that it includes a “market leader” and could have the potential for a wide influence on European consumers.

For the fact, the Cupertino-based tech giant is appealing the AGCM fine in a hearing scheduled for March 21. However, the arguments from both parties not just limited to AppleCare, but to the fact that the standard Apple warranty is restricted to just one year.

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