CUPERTINO, CA: Just ten days after Dell Computer's massive battery recall, Apple Computer on Thursday announced it is recalling 1.1 million of the same type of Sony battery packs used in it Apple laptops, due to fire hazard.
Apple and the US Consumer Products Safety Commission issued a joint press release Thursday afternoon. Sony issued a statement to media who requested it about the steps it was taking in the recall. Neither Apple, nor Sony could not immediately be reached for comment, but Apple has provided information for its customers on its Web site and through a toll-free number.
Apple announced that customers reported nine incidents of batteries overheating, including two reports of minor burns from handling overheated computers and other reports of minor property damage. No one was seriously injured, the company said.
Rechargeable, lithium-ion batteries with cells manufactured by Sony for certain previous iBook G4 and PowerBook G4 notebook computers are at risk of igniting. and consumers can check their model and serial numbers on Apple's website. The computers that are affected were sold between October 2003 and August 2006 and cost from $900 to $2,300, the CPSC said. The batteries were sold separately for about $130.
Dell's 4.1 million battery recall on Aug, 14 was the largest in the history of the consumer electronics industry, according to the CPSC. Although Dell consumers reported only six incidents of overheating batteries in the United States, intense interest in the problem arose when a video of an igniting laptop in Japan was circulated on the Internet in June. PRWeek spoke to Rick Clancy, VP of corporate communications for Sony Electronics, at that time.
"There were a tiny number of incidents, of hundreds of millions of lithium battery packs," Clancy said, about the Dell situation.
He said his company's communications team was speaking with the media all week to disseminate information, but essentially Dell spearheaded the communications effort.
"It's not appropriate for us to be over communicative, because the end user is not our customer, it's Dell's," Clancy said. "We are being as supportive as we possibly can."