Skip to main content

Did you have an iPhone 7? Apple may still owe you money

how to reset an iPhone
Digital Trends

It’s been years since the iPhone 7 was released in 2016, but the class action lawsuit against Apple over audio issues has finally worked its way through the courts, resulting in a $35 million settlement. The good news is that if you weren’t aware of this settlement and you are an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus owner, you may still be able to claim the settlement money.

The original deadline for the settlement was June 3, 2024, but the United States District Court for the Northern District of California revised it to July 3, 2024, for unknown reasons.

For those who weren’t aware, the lawsuit was filed over audio issues experienced by users of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus related to the “audio IC” chip. This issue was sometimes called “loop disease” or the “Audio IC Defect,” where some users saw a grayed-out speaker button on the call, leaving them unable to use the speaker.

Apple iPhone 7
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

iPhone 7 users who suffered from this issue also were unable to use Siri voice commands, had degraded microphone audio quality, and had a non-functional Voice Memos app. Basically, many of the vital audio and microphone functions on the phone simply didn’t work, and some people had to pay out of pocket for repairs or replacements.

According to the court, the following people are members of the settlement class:

  • Individual persons who are United States residents and who own or owned an Apple iPhone 7 or 7 Plus between September 16, 2016, and January 3, 2023
  • Reported to Apple in the United States issues reflected in Apple’s records as Sound-Speaker, Sound-Microphone, Sound-Receiver, Unexpected Restart/Shutdown, or Power On-Device Unresponsive (“Covered Issues”)
  • Those who paid Apple out of pocket for repairs or replacements for Covered Issues as reflected in Apple’s records.

The settlement requires that you have reported or documented the problem with Apple. And while Apple hasn’t acknowledged responsibility in the interest of avoiding trial, people who are part of the class action can get a payout ranging between $50 to $349 for those who had to pay Apple out of pocket for repair or replacements of their iPhone 7. For those who didn’t pay Apple out of pocket, they can get up to $125. That’s not exactly life-changing money, but it’s a bit more substantial than most of these class-action payouts, where you’re lucky if you get $25 back years later.

The Apple logo on the back of an iPhone 14.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

Naturally, the settlement class excludes Apple; any entity in which Apple has a controlling interest; Apple’s directors, officers, and employees; and Apple’s legal representatives, successors, and assigns. Also excluded from the Settlement Class are all judicial officers assigned to this case, as well as their staff and immediate families.

If you’re part of the settlement class, you should have received a postcard in the mail, but if you’re unsure, you can call toll free 1-833-633-0343 to find out or write to the Class Action Administrator at 1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210, Philadelphia, PA 19103. There should be a Final Approval Hearing on July 18, 2024, to finalize the amounts of the payments and who gets them.

Ajay Kumar
Freelance Writer, Mobile
Ajay has worked in tech journalism for more than a decade as a reporter, analyst, and editor.
A PC emulator is now on the iPhone app store after previous rejection
A photo of an Apple screen and a close-up of the App Store icon with three notifications on it.

A new game emulator for iOS has joined the party. UTM, an open-source PC operating system emulator, has released UTM SE after a lengthy review process and a previous rejection.

You can download UTM SE for free on App Store for iOS and visionOS, and it'll be added to AltStore Pal, an alternative app marketplace in the EU. "Shoutouts to AltStore team for their help and to Apple for reconsidering their policy," UTM posted on X (formerly Twitter).

Read more
The Google app on your iPhone just got a hidden new feature
iPhone display showing Google image in black on white

Here's some exciting news for users of the Google Search app on iPhone and iPad. According to 9to5Google, you can now personalize the home screen icon of the Google Search app to reflect your mood better.

The traditional Google app icon features red, yellow, blue, and green on a white background. However, you can now customize it to have a dark background or opt for a black icon on a white background or a white icon on a black background.

Read more
The iPhone 16 might be more important than you think
The iPhone 15 Pro Max's screen.

We've heard about many rumored features and specs for the iPhone 16 series. Now, we're learning about a major reason why this year's iPhone lineup will be so important for Apple. Per a new report, Apple is aiming for a 10% increase in iPhone shipments by the end of the year with the launch of the iPhone 16 lineup, according to Bloomberg. The company hopes its recently announced AI features will drive the success of the new series, which is expected to arrive in September.

In June, Apple announced the introduction of Apple Intelligence, a new set of tools available on the latest iPhones and also compatible with some older devices, such as the iPhone 15 Pro series. According to insiders, the company "has grown confident" that the introduction of Apple Intelligence will help the iPhone better compete with AI-enhanced smartphones from rivals like Samsung and Xiaomi.

Read more