Apple offers a range of products and gadgets to meet different needs, whether you use an iPhone as your primary means of communication or rely on your MacBook for work. In fact, so many people are taking advantage of Apple products that the tech giant became the first company to be valued at $3 trillion in January 2022. The New York Times reported. Much of this growth is due to its dedicated customer base, with many people clamoring for the latest and greatest Apple devices as soon as they roll out. But even the most popular products have their critics, and the company is now facing criticism in the form of a new lawsuit. Read on to find out which Apple product allegedly caused “significant damage.”
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Apple fans share rumors about upcoming product releases before they’re officially announced, and proudly line up to get their hands on the first ones as soon as they hit stores. That doesn’t mean these popular buys don’t get negative reviews. Recently, Apple got into hot water over Apple AirTags, tracking devices that can help locate misplaced items. Despite their intended use, these products have been linked to a total of 150 police reports, according to Vice. A majority of cases dealt with harassment, suggesting a major risk to user safety.
Now, another seemingly innocuous Apple product is sparking a safety debate, with two parents in Texas taking action.
A San Antonio, Texas couple filed a lawsuit against Apple on May 16, alleging that thanks to Apple AirPods, their 12-year-old son has “permanent hearing loss” in his right ear. As reported by Insider, the couple is seeking over $75,000 in damages.
carlos gordo and Ariani Reyes claim their child – now 14 and identified as BG in court documents – was watching Netflix on his iPhone and listening “at low volume” via his AirPods in May 2020. While the wireless headphones were connected, an Amber Alert arrived, the lawsuit says, which “erupted suddenly and without warning, at a volume that tore BG’s eardrum, damaged his cochlea, and caused significant injury to BG’s hearing.”
BG is now suffering from “episodes of dizziness, vertigo and nausea” due to the trauma, according to the lawsuit. The problem is so severe, according to the lawsuit, that the child will have to wear a hearing aid for the rest of his life.
“BG has lost his ability to lead a normal life, and he will continue to live a reduced life in the future, including reduced hearing ability,” the suit reads. Medical bills were also noted as a concern for the family, as BG’s issues persist and will require further medical care and follow-up.
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The lawsuit calls the AirPods “defective”, putting users’ hearing at risk. According to Tej Paranjpelawyer and co-founder of PMR Law, Apple also failed to provide sufficient warnings about the volume of AirPods.
“If Apple had designed AirPods to automatically adjust to safe levels or provided warnings about volume increases associated with alerts, this boy would have lived a normal life,” Paranjpe said in a press release. .
According to the statement, Gordoa and Reyes are suing for both negligence and fraud, alleging that Apple failed to properly test or manufacture the AirPods, nor did it notify users of the “rapid and unexpected” volume increases. when using headphones.
“We hope this lawsuit results in positive changes for consumers wearing Apple AirPods,” Robert Horn, attorney for PMR Law, said in the press release. “If we can prevent this from happening to another family, then that’s a step in the right direction.”
The lawsuit references previous complaints from Apple customers about notifications, with users demanding a way to adjust the volume of notifications. Users flooded Apple forums to discuss the problem, with one respondent writing in 2020 that “AirPods notifications are extremely loud, unlike other sounds.”
The lawsuit alleges that Apple was aware of “design, manufacturing or marketing defects affecting the AirPods” in light of these complaints, which were filed before and after the BG incident.
On the iPhone, Apple offers an earphone safety feature, which aims to protect you from hearing damage. You can access it by heading to Settings, then Sounds and Haptics, then Earphone Security. Once there, you can activate the reduction of loud sounds. However, it will automatically lower the volume if it’s been too loud for long periods of time, according to Gadget Audio.
Apple did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment on the ongoing lawsuit or issues with AirPod notification volume.
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