Samsung has been sued by a consumer watchdog in the Netherlands for allegedly failing to update its phones regularly. Android has often fallen short of expectations over periodic updates, as Google, OEMs and carriers have been equally blamed for delayed update releases on Samsung devices.
Consumentenbond, an influential consumer protection group in the Netherlands, has held Samsung responsible for the lack of updates on its devices. The non-profit organisation has issued "injunctive relief proceedings" against the South Korean company as it allegedly failed to give a proper response to their concerns.
Consumers are not sufficiently informed on the purchase of a Samsung Android device about how long they will receive software updates. The Dutch Consumers [are] demanding that Samsung [make] this matter clear and [provide] unambiguous information to customers...Samsung also does not provide sufficient information on critical security holes in its Android phones like Stage Fright (translated by Google Translate).
According to a press release, Samsung has been accused of unfair trade practices as consumers were not informed about the period of technical help or software support being offered to them at the time of purchase. Consumentenbond claims Samsung has failed to update more than 82% of its phones within two years of their purchase. Samsung has been asked to support every device that it sells regardless of its release date in the market. Effectively, the company is being asked to support updates up to four years or more.
This could put Samsung under severe pressure, as it would require the company to sell a reduced number of phones at higher cost or carry the burden of ensuring long-term support on low-cost devices. If the court upholds the watchdog's demands and enforces new regulations to protect consumer rights, it could set a big precedent across the European Union.
Responding to the allegations, Samsung Benelux reaffirmed its commitment to consumers, reports SamMobile.
At Samsung, we understand that our success depends on consumers' trust in us, and the products and services that we provide. That is why we have made a number of commitments in recent months to better inform consumers about the status of security issues, and the measures we are taking to address those issues. Data security is a top priority and we work hard every day to ensure that the devices we sell and the information contained on those devices are safeguarded.