Apple's iMessage "Black Hole" subject of class action suit

Apple's iMessage
Just the other day, we told you about a fix that Apple was offering to those who were losing their text messages in the iMessage "Black Hole". Those who left iOS for another platform, and took their phone number to the new handset, were unable to have text messages forwarded to their new device. Instead, these missives would head to iMessage as though the recipient had never left iOS. But without an active iPhone, the texts would sit in iMessage, unable to be retrieved by the person that they were addressed to.

Even though Apple now has a solution for this problem, it is too late for some people. One woman in California, Adrienne Moore, lost countless messages in the iMessage "Black Hole," and a judge says that she can proceed with a class action suit against Apple. Moore claims in her suit that Apple failed to forward messages sent to iMessage, as a way to keep people from leaving iOS. That theory was given some merit by the presiding judge. Speaking of the judge, want to take a guess who was wearing the robes in the courtroom? If you guessed Judge Lucy Koh, who sat on the bench for the two Apple-Samsung patent trials in the U.S., give yourself a pat on the back.

Koh denied Apple's request for a dismissal. And while she did toss some of Moore's claims related to "unfair business practice," she did rule that the plaintiff can continue with her "tortious interference with contract" claim. This says that Ms. Moore, by having such a large amount of her texts fall into the iMessage "Black Hole", was having her contract with Verizon interfered with by Apple. Clever, right?

The plaintiff can now proceed with a class action suit, which will probably end up like most class action suits do. After both sides reach a settlement, the class members will each get a post card with a quarter attached to it, and the lawyers will take millions in fees. Meanwhile, check out the official ruling, embedded below for your viewing pleasure.



source: Scribd via GigaOm

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78 Comments

1. darkkjedii

Posts: 31346; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Bad Apple! She coulda just signed out of iMessage though, that usually works. Bad Apple though!

2. Alan01

Posts: 631; Member since: Mar 21, 2012

Actually, signing out of iMessage did absolutely nothing to prevent the "Black Hole" from holding on to texts without forwarding them. Did you really think that such an easy answer would have worked in this situation? Regards, Alan F.

7. Awalker

Posts: 1986; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

I've seen some message boards where people said they signed out of iMessage and still couldn't get their messages or they don't have an iPhone anymore to sign out of it.

11. Arte.8800

Posts: 48; Member since: Nov 10, 2014

Lmao... But they don't care, they have an" iPhone ". That's what matters. The emblem.

48. Ducfranz

Posts: 11; Member since: Sep 18, 2014

I work in a call center for Verizon. I remember back when the Galaxy s5 released customers left iphones for it But would later call back saying they no longer want it becuase they have not been receiving text from other people and we're extremely upset. Wouldn't even want an explanation as to why they just want to return back to the iPhone I thought immediately it was all under Apple masterplan.

19. darkkjedii

Posts: 31346; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Worked for me during an iMessage issue, but this black hole thing could be entirely different

24. Napalm_3nema

Posts: 2236; Member since: Jun 14, 2013

That's not exactly true. I hop OSes all the time, and after the first time, I just made sure my number and email addresses were disassociated from iMessage. I haven't had a problem since. As a matter of fact, I have started using iMessage on my Air 2, using just my Apple account email, and I haven't missed a single text on my Nexus.

59. Sauce2

Posts: 199; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

And at the end of the day, Apple's iMessage still triumphs over every other messenger app. You know, the news you guys failed to report when it was announced.

76. LordCaedus

Posts: 85; Member since: Nov 01, 2013

Not sure about this one. Verizon Messages is a pretty great app. With it I can access my texts from any device and online regardless of OS.

16. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Same. I've never had the issue. Just a quick sign out of iMessage worked for me.

55. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

Speaking from the perspective of someone in the IT field, I can tell you that the average smartphone user is not as informed as the typical phone arena reader. People have faith that today's electronics should just work, they're completely ignorant of any hoops that require jumping through in order to make something as basic as text messaging to work when switching platforms. Because of this, the issue is a pretty big one especially considering how texting is nearly as important on today's phones as sending and receiving calls. As an example... I've been receiving texts this past few days about updates on my uncle's condition who was sent to the hospital earlier in the week. No calls, just texts. If I had switched from an iPhone to Android or Windows and hadn't known about the extra crap that is required to make texting possible from other platforms, I would have no clue that there was ever a problem. Now I've never owned an iPhone, but you can't argue that the issue listed above can result in severe consequences for the countless others who have left Apple and had no knowledge of this problem. iMessage was poorly designed software that should have NEVER allowed something like this to happen.

56. Sakeem

Posts: 863; Member since: Sep 05, 2012

All the best to your uncle. Hope its nothing serious and he gets better.

58. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

Thank you, He's doing better at the moment, I probably shouldn't have used him to push a point, but I felt like a personal experience with serious subject matter relating to the topic at hand might drill into people's brains that a problem of this severity might have dramatic repercussions.

57. meanestgenius

Posts: 22314; Member since: May 28, 2014

Agree. +1000.

60. Sauce2

Posts: 199; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

Poorly designed? Are you mental? iMessage is the most secure messaging platform. Look up the recent news.

62. Penny

Posts: 1862; Member since: Feb 04, 2011

If a person has to jump through hoops to complete any specific action on a piece of software, then that is a poorly designed aspect of the software. UX is increasingly important in today's tech industries. To give you an analogy, it's like having a light switch for your room that has no "Off" switch. The only way to turn it off is to remove the wall plate and pull the wiring.

63. techperson211

Posts: 1280; Member since: Feb 27, 2014

I think he's just telling his opinion. No need to get so hyped. If you say it's the "most secured messaging platform" then how do you explained these? I've used other OEM never encountered this kind of problem.

64. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

I have no clue if it is more or less secure than any other messaging service, and to be perfectly frank, after the whole iCloud scandal, I would think twice about any security claims that Apple has regarding its software. ...Security aside, you completely missed my point, and Penny perfectly sums it up in comment 62, "it's like having a light switch for your room that has no 'Off' switch. The only way to turn it off is to remove the wall plate and pull the wiring". Who cares if the light switch is the most secure in the world, it simply does not work the way it's supposed to. That to me is poorly designed software. Add the fact that this has been an issue sense the iPhone 4s was the latest thing from Apple, I think this speaks very poorly of the development team at Apple.

67. techperson211

Posts: 1280; Member since: Feb 27, 2014

Most of the apple fans here will just buy the phone because of the logo not the functionality, reliability. They'll just ignore and accept these shortcoming of apple and if other OEM encounter this they'll say because it's not secured doesn't have the fruit logo.

68. AlikMalix unregistered

When you say that "iMessage was a poorly designed software" what do you mean exactly? I have been using iMessage since the day it was released - it worked flawlessly, the features were great, and it never lagged, was glitching, or when I tried Samsung S4 (before going back to an iPhone 5s) I didn't even have to sign out of iMessage as this issue was not known at that time - I have not missed one text or image - in fact I continued to use iMessage on my iPad (which automatically received all messages posted to my phone number) while using a galaxy s4. No doubt that a number of users experienced the problem after switching, but don't use this as a means to s**t on a very well made messaging client.

71. Awalker

Posts: 1986; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

IMessage worked as intended - to keep people tied to Apple. A couple of years a former iPhone user said she had to call all her iPhone contacts and tell them to delete her from their phone and then reenter her contact information. Apparently when they sent her a message using iMessage it would automatically sign her back into the service.

77. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

Let me start by saying that I love the Timely app on Android, it has a beautiful interface, great functionality and I loved it very much. I however had to get rid of the device because every once in a great while it would fail to sound an alarm. I tried troubleshooting the app, tested out various possibilities, and in the end I came to the conclusion that the occurrence of the issue was completely random and not the result of user error. Because of this I uninstalled the app and I have placed a scathing review in the Play store. That being said, I can easily say that iMessage is flawed because of widespread reports of the issue identified in the article (maybe you didn't read it and that's why you're asking how I think the program is flawed). If Google Chrome made it so that you couldn't browse the internet from any other device unless you deactivated from the last computer you used then you wouldn't hesitate to call foul. The simple fact of the matter is, iMessage is the software solely responsible for the issue, No other messaging program makes you go through these additional steps... thus making it flawed software. If you like it, that's awesome, I'm assuming that you are not migrating to a new mobile platform any time soon so you should be unaffected by the issue, that being said, you are not the only person in the world that matters and just because you're happy with the software doesn't mean that several hundred, several thousand people aren't incredibly frustrated by it.

74. SaintHelena

Posts: 397; Member since: Nov 05, 2014

It's a feature. You complain it wrong. /sarcasm

75. meanestgenius

Posts: 22314; Member since: May 28, 2014

It's English. You speak it wrong. No sarcasm intended.

49. EC112987

Posts: 1216; Member since: Nov 10, 2014

Happened to me as well, i had to sent out my iPhone to repair and didn't get any messages the whole week. i call apple and they signed me out and still didn't help lol

3. meanestgenius

Posts: 22314; Member since: May 28, 2014

This is what happens when a company tries to keep everyone that has used its products locked in to its walled garden. Why Apple thought that they could do this without there being repercussions is beyond me.

4. Arte.8800

Posts: 48; Member since: Nov 10, 2014

Good to hear, few have left. More should follow and migrate to other platforms.....

6. meanestgenius

Posts: 22314; Member since: May 28, 2014

Indeed. Apple is just rotten to the core.

12. Arte.8800

Posts: 48; Member since: Nov 10, 2014

Actually, their worser than that.

17. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Oh shut up. You act like Apple is the only OEM to have huge problems like this. Should I humble you or are you ready to stop sticking your foot in your mouth?

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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