The Federal Trade Commission sent out notices to six companies back in April. These notices called for “do not remove” sticker to be removed from gaming consoles and other electronics. These stickers usually void the warranty when removed, but the Federal Trade Commission has declared this illegal. Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft, Hyundai, HTC, and Asus are the companies who are being forced to remove their “do not remove” stickers.
The notices were issued on April 9th, and all companies have been given 30 days to change their warranty policy.
The Federal Trade Commission, with the issuing of these documents, believes that these companies are in violation of the 1975 Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. This act says that companies who charge more than five dollars for a product may not place restrictions self repair restrictions on machines that a warranty is offered for. The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act only applies to consumer goods and is not a restriction upon any devices used for business purposes.
For years, game consoles from Sony and Microsoft have been telling consumers that they cannot work on their own consoles. In fear of the warranty being expelled consumers obeyed. Now, with the shipment of these notices, consumers are open to work on their own machines.
With the changes being forced upon the gaming and mobile phone industries, we may see class action lawsuits in the future. Any company that doesn’t comply to the notice is subject to fines, possibly for every device they sell past the cut-off date. Even though the notice has just went out, console manufacturers and cell phone creators have been in violation of this 1975 law since they began production. Everyone will have to wait and see what more comes from this FTC ruling.