Apple faces a $5M lawsuit over Wi-Fi Assist feature

Apple is now facing a $5M lawsuit over the feature that came with iOS 9, Wi-Fi Assist.

What is Wi-Fi Assist and how does it work?

It is a new feature on iOS 9 that helps the users stay connected to the Internet even if they have a poor Wi-Fi connection, by switching to cellular automatically. The feature can be used with most apps such as Apple Music, Safari, Maps, Mail and more.

In the latest version of Apple’s operating system iOS 9, the Wi-Fi Assist is enabled by default. The problem is that it is not clear when exactly this feature is active, which is why many users reported a problem with large data bills.

According to AppleInsider, a couple from California has launched a lawsuit after they got a large data bill. On Friday, William Scott Phillips and Suzanne Schmidt Phillips filed a class-action complaint in a U.S District Court in San Jose.

There are many people who are not familiar with Wi-Fi Assist, how does it work, and that even exists, which is why they used more cellular data. That was the case with Willian and Suzanne. They said they didn’t know anything about Wi-Fi Assist feature and since it is turned on by default, Apple should be held responsible and pick up not just their bill, but bills of all others like them. The “overall amount it controversy exceeds” $5 million.

The company updated the website after the initial complaints:

“Because you’ll stay connected to the Internet over cellular when you have a poor Wi-Fi connection, you might use more cellular data. For most users, this should only be a small percentage higher than previous usage.”

However, that is not enough. The suit states that the average consumers use their devices for streaming of videos and music, to run all kinds of apps and all that can use a significant data.

Apple is accused of negligent misrepresentation, the state’s False Advertising Law, and of violating California’s Unfair Competition Law.

If you just upgraded your device to iOS 9, here is how you can turn off Wi-Fi Assist: Navigate to Settings > Cellular, then scroll down and tap Wi-Fi Assist.

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