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PreCentral: Palm Profile backup failure class-action lawsuit finally paying out, three years later

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November 2009. The original Pre and Pixi were the only webOS devices on the market, with Sprint still the exclusive carrier in the US. webOS 1.3.1 was just released and there were under 500 apps in the App Catalog. And Palm's backup servers were suffering some major backup failures causing people's Palm Profile backup data to be totally or partially erased when trying to restore their data. Unlike subsequent times when the Palm servers went down over the next few years when no data was lost, this failure was widespread and caused significant losses of data. So much so, that a class action lawsuit was filed against both Palm and Sprint a few weeks later.

The case of Standiford v. Palm, Inc., and Sprint Spectrum, L.P et al., Case No. 5:09-cv-05719-LHK, United States District Court Northern District of California San Jose Division was settled back in November 2011, almost two years after the backup failures occurred. The settlement called for Palm (now HP, having been purchased over a year earlier) and Sprint to pay a total of $640,000 to be distributed as an online HP store redemption code or a Sprint bill credit. If you had a permanent or temporary data loss and had filed out the claim form before the May 29, 2012 deadline, you were entitled to either a $30 or $20 settlement, respectively, in the manner of your choosing. 

Now, a few months shy of 3 years after the backup failures, it appears as if those settlements were finally being paid out. This blogger - who had suffered a permanent data loss - received an email yesterday from settlement administration company GCG with the subject "Redemption Code for Standiford v. Palm, Inc. and Sprint Spectrum, L.P. Settlement" that contained an HP Official (online) Store redemption code worth $30 (you can read the full email after the break below). If you filed a claim but haven't received the email, be sure to check your spam folder. You can also contact the Settlement Administrator at the number listed in the email or refer to the official lawsuit website for additional questions.

So, does $20 or $30 on your Sprint bill or as an HP redemption code make up for your loss of data three years earlier?  Probably not, but the lesson learned from the original backup failures to always have multiple backups of your data and not rely on just a single source was truly priceless.  

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