Print 136 comment(s) - last by SiliconAddict.. on Jul 8 at 10:12 PM

What does the iPhone and vampires have in common? Both apparently can be killed by sunlight. Apple says that the following warning can occur when its phone gets exposed to sunlight.  (Source: Apple)
Apple finally responds to reports about its heat issues

Apple has been having plenty of headaches lately with its MacBook Pro displays failing and experiencing distortion.  Worse yet is the iPhone 3G S's quality problems, which include reported overheating and signal issues.  

The overheating was first noted in Apple support forums.  Soon, though, writers at several tech publications -- PC WorldWired, Le Journal Du Geek and The Telegraph -- began to notice the problems on their own phones.  The Le Journal Du Geek writer posted pictures of a white phone and noticed that the overheating was so severe that it colorized the plastic.  The heat tended to turn the case pink or brown.

Now, Apple has at last issued a response and it is assigning the blame for the problem on its users' behavior, sunlight, and on the seasons.  Apple says that leaving the device in a car on a hot day is one possible culprit causing its phone to overheat.  Apparently, like a vampire the phone is no friend of the sun --  Apple states that "leaving it in direct sunlight for extended amounts of time" may cause it to overheat.

Apple lists the use of "GPS tracking in a car on a sunny day or listening to music while in direct sunlight" as two particularly dangerous operations.

According to Apple the following problems are the result of the iPhone's overheating:

  • The device stops charging
  • Display dims
  • Weak cellular signal
  • Temperature warning screen appears with the message "iPhone needs to cool down before you can use it" (see image below)

Apple says that the iPhone is only meant to operate at temperatures between 0º and 35º C (32º to 95º F) and be stored at temperatures between -20º and 45º C (-4º to 113º F).  Unfortunately, this is much lower than the temperatures experienced in much of the American South and Southwest.

Based on Apple's stance it seems there's no immediate solution for iPhone owners.  Apple seems unwilling to agree that its hardware needs revision to deal with the problem, instead assigning the blame elsewhere -- the sun, heat, and summer weather.  And that means as summer temperatures heat up, users are left to prepare for the worst -- their phones beginning to fail.

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RE: so what?
By The0ne on 7/2/2009 11:05:36 AM , Rating: 5
I know you really believe this but I can tell you from a design/test point of view it's not. Chips and components are selected for the operating range and in most cases exceed them. During the temperature chamber test temperatures are taken above the operating range to determine where you're product is at. You seriously cannot expect to sell a product, like the iphone, domestically without considering the temperatures of all states...ALL. This is a requirement.

Not having this requirement means the company is being lazy, being cheap and/or trying to rip consumers off. And for Apple to deny and claim that it's the sunlight (environmental factors) is even more ridiculous.

It's not the user this time, it's the product that has a defect.

RE: so what?
By Omega215D on 7/2/2009 11:09:20 AM , Rating: 2
But remember that Li-Ion and Li-Poly shouldn't be directly in a source of heat not just chips and boards.

Just like the time I left the classic GameBoy out in the car during summer and the batteries exploded (popped).

I am in no way defending Apple, it's just this sort of thing is printed in manuals of electronics.

RE: so what?
By smackababy on 7/2/2009 11:16:00 AM , Rating: 4
The problem isn't people leaving it in a hot car. It is people using it in everyday summer temperatures in states in the Southern part of the US. Typical Apple to blaim something other than themselves.

RE: so what?
By aj28 on 7/6/09, Rating: 0
RE: so what?
By The0ne on 7/2/2009 11:28:22 AM , Rating: 2
I understand that but the temperature chamber test raises the overall temperature of the product, not the just chips. For example we take our POS (point of sale) terminals to 150 while our operating range goes to 120. 120 is where we start seeing failures from our CPU from time to time. 95 is kinda pathetic in comparison and that's not to say our product isn't hot at 95 as we have a stepper motor :)

If this is one off cases then I be fine but it "appears" to be more.

RE: so what?
By aj28 on 7/6/2009 2:24:52 AM , Rating: 2
POS terminals are much larger devices than iPhones, and hilariously enough, generally more sluggish in their operation. Point being, faster device, smaller space, lower tolerance for increased temperatures. What's your point?

RE: so what?
By Screwballl on 7/2/09, Rating: 0
"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town." -- Charlie Miller
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