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Samsung taken to court over its lack of Android updates
- A case against Samsung is now in Dutch court, where the company will have to defend itself against consumer advocacy group Consumentenbond.
- The case revolves around Samsung’s alleged lack of software updates to some of its Android devices.
- If Consumentenbond wins the case, it could have some serious ramifications on Samsung’s update responsibilities.
Back in 2016, we told you how a Dutch consumer advocacy group called Consumentenbond sued Samsung due to the company’s alleged neglect when it comes to issuing software updates to its handsets. Well, it only took two years, but today the Dutch court will start the hearing process in the case, putting Samsung under the gun to defend its update practices.
The assumed industry standard for smartphone updates is two years, which likely came into place due to mobile service contracts lasting that long. However, there are numerous examples of phones from Samsung where the company stopped issuing software updates well before that two-year period was over.
According to Consumentenbond, its intention with this case is to make the two-year term of smartphone updates a hard rule. Additionally, it thinks that when a consumer buys a phone should be the starting point of the two-year period, not when the phone hits shelves. As an example, if one were to go to a store right now and buy a brand new Samsung Galaxy S8, a one-year-old device, that person should get updates into 2020, not just into 2019, two years after Samsung released the phone.
Samsung is going to have to defend itself over the smartphones it neglected to update during the two-year period after the phone ceased to be sold in stores, as Consumentenbond will likely bring up each and every Samsung device that has gone without an update before its two-year term.
In its defense, Samsung will likely say that the two-year term is a guideline and not an official policy, and will probably point to flagship devices in its roster that have received updates well-past the two year period. An example of this would be the Galaxy S4, which received updates in 2017, a full four years after its release.
Consumentenbond is an old organization that is well-respected among consumer advocacy groups, but Samsung is one of the largest and wealthiest companies on the planet. It will be interesting to see how this David-and-Goliath hearing pans out. It will also be interesting to see how this could potentially affect other countries should Conumentenbond emerge victorious.