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article imageApple recalls dangerous power adapters sold worldwide for years

By James Walker     Jan 28, 2016 in Technology
Apple has announced a voluntary recall of some international AC power adapters shipped with its Mac and iPad computers between 2003 and 2015. The company says the adapters can fail and cause an electric shock.
Apple says it has received 12 different reports of the adapters triggering an electrical shock over the past twelve years. Without revealing details, it has decided to launch an international recall because customer safety is its "top priority."
The affected wall plugs were sold in Argentina, Brazil, South Korea, New Zealand and continental Europe. Adapters designed for nations including the U.S., U.K. and China remain safe to use.
Newer USB-based chargers are not affected but the one included with Apple's World Travel Adapter Kit is. The $29 accessory package includes a set of seven different AC plugs for use in sockets around the world.
The company said: "Apple has determined that, in very rare cases, the two prong Apple AC wall plug adapters designed for use in Continental Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Argentina and Brazil may break and create a risk of electrical shock if touched. These wall plug adapters shipped from 2003 to 2015 with Mac and certain iOS devices, and were also included in the Apple World Travel Adapter Kit."
The company has provided guidance to customers to help with the identification of adapters. Affected models have a group of four or five characters on the inside of the slot used to connect to an Apple power adapter. Newer versions that remain safe to use have a 3-letter regional code (EUR, KOR, AUS, ARG or BRA) printed instead.
Customers are advised to return their adapter to a local Apple Store or Authorized Service Provider to obtain a free replacement. The company will need the serial number of a Mac, iPad, iPhone or iPod to verify the exchange is genuine.
Apple has announced a recall of AC power adapters that can cause an electric shock [28/01/2016]
Apple has announced a recall of AC power adapters that can cause an electric shock [28/01/2016]
The Verge notes that this recall isn’t the first time Apple has had problems with the power adapters shipped with its products. In 2008, it was forced to offer replacement wall adapters for the iPhone 3G after discovering the prongs could detach from the main plug and get stuck in a socket, creating a risk of electric shock.
A more recent issue in 2012 saw Apple launch a replacement program for European adapters shipped with the iPhone 3GS, 4 and 4S. The company discovered they could overheat, posing a fire hazard.
Apple's announcement today comes a week after Microsoft launched a recall of chargers shipped with its Surface Pro, Surface Pro 2 and Surface Pro 3 tablets. It found that the cable can overheat if wound up tightly.
Power cord safety clearly remains a major consideration when designing new electronics but some companies seem to be having trouble sourcing safe components. Apple customers affected by this latest recall can find advice on the exchange process in the company's support post on the issue.
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