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Error 53 Leads Apple To Australian Watchdog Action

Australia's Competion and Consumer Commission has instigated action against Apple for failing to honour warranties on products having received third-party repairs, in contravention of the country's consumer law.

The action was sparked after Apple blocked iPhones with non-authorised Touch ID sensors from running iOS, presenting users with the infamous Error 53. Apple backed down and restored access, but not before the ACCC had instigated an investigation into the company's practices.

The ACCC has allegedly determined that at least 275 consumers had their rights breached by Apple, an action which could prove expensive for Apple, with the damages up to a quarter of a billion Australian dollars possible.

What the outcome will be remains in doubt. This is the same commission that sided with Apple in its battle with the banks last week. Apple also escaped action four years ago, when the ACCC accused it of failing to comply with the law for the replacement or refund of faulty products. Something that Australian's enjoy with no expiry date from purchase.

Apple agreed to act within the law and retrain staff last time, I'd expect the changes made to remove the Error 53 lockout to prevent penalties this time too.

One can't help but wonder why, in a country with such strong consumer laws, any Australian would have any third-party repairs made to a part that seems immune to accidental damage?