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Apple Reportedly Offers $44 Credit To Canadian iPod Owners

The reward is based on a class-action lawsuit complaining some of the rechargeable batteries in devices bought before June 2004 died after three hours of use.
Apple Canada is reportedly offering a total of $3.54 million in credits to Canadian iPod owners, in order to settle two lawsuits over the battery life of the portable music players.

The credits are being offered to owners of first-, second-, or third-generation iPods bought before June 24, 2004, The Gazette newspaper in Montreal reported Thursday. The lawsuits, one filed in Montreal and the other in Toronto, claimed that the rechargeable batteries in the devices died after three hours of use, while Apple advertised the iPods as running for eight hours between charges.

The Ontario Superior Court granted class-action status to the Toronto suit, while the court in Quebec denied the same status to the Montreal suit. Nevertheless, Apple Canada has agreed to a settlement covering both suits, the newspaper said. The deal has to be finalized by the courts. The next hearing is May 26 in Montreal and June 20 in Toronto.

As many as 80,000 Canadians could be eligible for a credit, lawyer Philippe Trudel, who represented the plaintiff in the Montreal suit, told the newspaper. The credit of $44 (U.S.) per person would be usable at Apple's online store.

Still pending against Apple Canada is a lawsuit filed last fall by Montreal law student David Bitton, who claims his iPod Nano has 7.45 GB of storage, while Apple advertised 8 GB. Bitton is seeking class-action status, and is asking for a full refund of the $220 purchase price. Failing that, Bitton says he'll take a 7.5% refund of the purchase price, which corresponds with the lesser storage, plus $75 in damages.

Apple has had to deal with other marketing-related lawsuits this year. In March, a class-action suit filed in federal court in San Jose, Calif., accused the company of deceptively marketing its 20-inch iMacs by grossly inflating the capabilities of the monitor. The plaintiffs claimed the monitors were inferior to previous generations of displays. The suit is pending.