What’s the truth behind exploding iphones?
Sunday, August 30, 2009
We're accustomed to hearing stories about how cell phone batteries explode and cause major damage to their surroundings, and iphones have their unique stories about overheating and the ramifications of it.
Few weeks ago we heard a story about how an iPhone 3G spontaneously combusted and totally ruined a car seat. The owner left his iphone in the car unattended and did not have it connected to a charger. He later returned to only see black smoke emanating from his vehicle and with the ruins of the disaster left over. The car itself wasn't extremely damaged for the seat took most of the punishment. Who knows what could've been the sole cause of the accident, but maybe the battery and other components contributed to it slowly melting and burning up.
Another incident occurred in southern France where a French teenager suffered an eye injury after his girlfriend's iPhone started making a hissing noise with the screen suddenly shattering afterwards – sending shards in the air right at him. Luckily though, he didn't lose an eye during the accident. So if you start hearing the same noise, just put it down and walk away as far as possible so your eyes can at least gaze at the unfolding event.
In the face of reports claiming that exploding iPhone screens are injuring users, the marketing manager of Apple France, Michael Coulumb, met with the top trade minister of France, Herve Novelli. After the meeting, a statement was released that said that the explosion was not due to any battery-related problems, but instead blamed a shock that broke the screen.
Apple previously said that the number of incidents could be counted on the fingers of a hand and that in all cases, the battery was not the cause of the explosion and instead, the cause was related to external pressure cracking the display.
Apple might need to recount the number of fingers on its hand because recent reports count 10 incidents in France with others occurring in Sweden, Holland and other locations; the latest incident happened to a 15 year old Belgian lad who was about to make a call on his iPhone when the screen "imploded" leaving him with no serious injury but with a two day long headache.
While Apple earlier this month called the reports a case of "isolated incidents", the EU consumer protection agency in Brussels has activated a rapid alarm system which notifies the appropriate governmental workers at the 27 member countries and asks national regulators if they have information on any other incidents. So far, there have been no other cases