Plaintiffs Claim Reading on iPad Is Not “Just Like Reading a Book”

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Not a Book A class-action lawsuit filed last week claims that Apple is guilty of fraud and consumer-law violations because the iPad may shut down under certain "environmental conditions."  Specifically, Jacob Baltazar and two other plaintiffs claim that the device may overheat and turn itself off if used (for example) outdoors in warm weather, and allege that "nowhere in any of Apple's advertising materials" is this temperature problem disclosed.

Actually, Apple's materials do say that the iPad will operate at temperatures between 32 to 95 degrees, which seems to suggest that it might not operate at temperatures above 95 degrees.  But I guess you would only know that if you had bothered to read the materials on the website.

Wait — plaintiffs apparently did read the materials on the website, because they complain that the website promised them that "[r]eading on iPad is just like reading a book."  And they allege they have discovered since buying the product that this is not literally true:

[C]ontrary to this promise, using the iPad is not "just like reading a book" at all since books do not close when the reader is enjoying them in the sunlight or in other normal environments.  This promise, like other portions of Apple's marketing material for the iPad, is false.

Having allegedly bought their iPads because they were looking for something that was not a book but worked just like one, plaintiffs are now seeking damages and/or restitution on behalf of themselves and other similarly situated consumers (assuming there are any).

At Consumerist, where I saw this, Chris Walters wrote that "[i]f the plaintiffs win, I think Apple should also be forced to install a wind sensor so that pages flip automatically when you're outdoors in a strong breeze. Then the company could sell . . . a wireless accessory that you would have to put on top of the screen to 'hold down' the pages."  Excellent points.