More than 100 PC users in Illinois are suing Microsoft for over $5 million. They say they were pushed or forced into upgrading to Windows 10 by the company’s aggressive marketing, and claim that upgrading damaged their computers.
Windows 10 was offered as a free update for a year after its release in July 2015. The class-action lawsuit claims many users had their hard drives damaged after agreeing to install the upgrade.
“Allegedly the Windows 10 installer genie checks the consumer’s computer for compatibility; it does not, however, check the condition of the PC and whether or not the hard drive can withstand the stress of the Windows 10 installation,” reads the complaint, which was filed in Chicago last week.
One of the plaintiffs, Stephanie Watson, claims Windows 10 installed without her consent. She says she took her PC to Geek Squad, which was unable to fix her computer after the upgrade destroyed some of her data, reports Courthouse News.
Another of the plaintiffs, Robert Saiger, says he agreed to the upgrade but that Windows 10 stopped some of his software from working and caused data loss. The third plaintiff named in the suit, Howard Goldberg, claims he accepted the upgrade after repeatedly declining it for six months. He says the download failed over and over, damaging his computer. He blames the failed upgrade for lost data, lost revenue, and costs to repair his PC.
In a statement shared with Courthouse News, a Microsoft spokesperson said, “We believe the plaintiffs’ claims are without merit.” Microsoft went on to defend the free upgrade, calling it “a choice designed to help people take advantage of the most secure, and most productive Windows.” It added that customers had the option to refuse the upgrade, as well 31 days to roll back to their old operating system after accepting the update.
Last year, Microsoft awarded a California travel agent $10,000 in small-claims court after she claimed Windows 10 upgraded without her consent, damaging her computer and causing her lost business. Microsoft appealed the decision at first but later dropped the appeal to “avoid the expense of further litigation,” according to a Microsoft spokesperson.
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