Apple iPhone 4s fatally electrocutes a 28 year-old man in Thailand
A whole series of deadly stories kicked off this past July when a flight attendant was supposedly killed from a shock that was emitted from her Apple iPhone 5 while it was being charged. The phone rang and 23 year-old Ma Ai Lun died when she answered the call. Since then, a number of gruesome incidents took place, including one involving a shock that was released from an 8 year old's Apple iPad. The girl's father was on the receiving end of that jolt which sent him hurdling across the room.
Considering that most of the incidents involved a third party charger, Apple took great pains to educate iDevice owners about the differences between third party and original equipment. Apple even offered a discounted Apple made charger for just $10, to those trading in a third party unit.
As it turns out, in the latest story, the deceased was apparently talking on the device while it was plugged in. Pictures of the equipment involved in the electrocution show that the charger was a blue colored model, not the official white charger that comes in the box with the phone. Once again, it looks like a third party charger is to blame, but this might not be enough to cool off a nervous public in the region, one that might decide not to tempt fate regardless of who manufactured the charger.
This Apple iPhone 4s and third party charger are allegedly to blame for the electrocution death of a Thai man
source: DailyNews (translated) via MacRumors
1. cripton805 (Posts: 968; Member since: 18 Mar 2012)
Hurled across the room? I doubt that. Can the jack even produce a deadly shock? Its cant be a 220. What are the amps and volts on those batteries?
16. VZWuser76 (Posts: 1754; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
Don't know about hurling someone across a room, but Europe runs I believe either 220 or 240V. Unsure about Asia, but the reasoning behind it is, the higher the voltage, the smaller the wire needed to carry the same amount of current. Where we here in the states need 14ga+ for our wiring, Europe can use lamp cord (18-20ga) for the same amount of current. Ohms law, voltage ÷ resistance = current.
20. eisenbricher (Posts: 971; Member since: 09 Aug 2012)
Asia (at least here in India) we run 220-240v
21. cripton805 (Posts: 968; Member since: 18 Mar 2012)
I undertand that, but why would they want to run 220/240s anyway? Its less safe and do people really complain that their wires are too thick or what. I guess it's how it's been and its probably too expensive to switch. At least their appliances are all good and can get enough juice. lol
24. Shatter (Posts: 2031; Member since: 29 May 2013)
A defective outlet could overvolt and kill you. So can a lightning strike that hits near your house if you where holding your phone and it put out enough energy. I have had a few things fried by lightning strikes.
33. VZWuser76 (Posts: 1754; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
That's their electrical standard, just as we have our own here. People aren't complaining about their wires being too thick, it comes down to money. The lower the wire gauge number, the larger the diameter of wire. The larger diameter wire, the more copper used, and copper isn't cheap. When I was an installer, I remember hearing about thefts of spools of copper wire, people ripping out copper plumbing pipe from vacant buildings, etc. You may not think it adds up but it does. Higher voltage may hit you harder, but it only takes around 26mA to kill you, depending on your body resistance, and that's a miniscule amount of current. A standard phone charger is 1-2A, or 1000-2000mA, so under the right conditions, almost anything that can be plugged into a wall socket can kill.
71. Tråget (Posts: 3; Member since: 14 Nov 2013)
If it only takes 26mA to kill you. Do you really think chargers would be allowed to give 2000mA? Let alone the sockets, at least here in Sweden that gives up to 10-16A at 230V. And I will admit that I don’t have a clue how the electric works in Asia, but normally the fuse should blow as soon as you short-circuit the current? At least that's how it works in Sweden... But on the other side we have very high security standards here, maybe that's why we don't die if we put our fingers in the fuse box! :-P
74. Augustine (Posts: 776; Member since: 28 Sep 2013)
The electrical resistance of the human body is 100kΩ in dry conditions, therefore 2600V would be necessary for a current of 26mA to pass through it. However, sweat and water can reduce its resistance to mere 1kΩ, when 26V could be fatally hazardous. Moreover, electric shock usually breaks the skin, when the resistance is then just 500Ω, opening multiple pathways for the electric current to kill someone: the heart, the diaphragm, the nervous system, etc.
I guess that the proliferation of portable devices that require charging probably increases the number of electric shock, which puts great responsibility not only on makers of chargers, but also of devices, who shouldn't count on perfect chargers to protect the users from electrocution.
76. JakeLee (banned) (Posts: 1021; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)
You won't believe how it works in China. They cheat you at every corner to save one single cent. There are even faked eggs!!!
You can visit famous winery and make purchase at the shop there. They are faked ones.
Cigarettes sold at duty free shops at airports are also fake most of the time.
The Chinese themselves say "Everything can be a fake except for your mother"
THERE IS NO FUSE. PERIOD.
35. TheOldOne (Posts: 98; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)
220V, 50Hz in Europe. You can get a pretty good shock if this passes through the USB cable and, through the metal rim of the iPhone right on your skin.
Normally, you should not have more than 5V over the USB, this does not even penetrates skin, and you berely feel it it if you put your tongue on it (DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME!)
57. VZWuser76 (Posts: 1754; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
That's why I said under the right conditions.
64. Augustine (Posts: 776; Member since: 28 Sep 2013)
The higher the voltage, the smaller the current to carry the same POWER (Joule's Law: power = voltage • current). Lower voltages are preferred, but it requires more copper in wires, so those regions with little access to cheap copper went for higher voltages.
38. Username. (banned) (Posts: 74; Member since: 25 Nov 2013)
Where are all the iFans, Apple users.... nowhere to be seen....!
Now this is the 4rth major incident:
All hiding away......
42. promise7 (Posts: 474; Member since: 03 Jul 2013)
Hiding from what? He was using a unauthorized knockoff charger which Apple specifically says not to.
60. Finalflash (Posts: 1872; Member since: 23 Jul 2013)
But it only seems to be happening mainly with iPhones and no other phone. I am pretty sure more people use other phones in Asia and everywhere else even, so why aren't we hearing the same issues with those phones? The third party charger is only part of the issue, but the fact that this only seems to be largely happening with Apple gear is probably pretty telling of a product design flaw as well.
62. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
Do your research first, then mouth off
63. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
66. Augustine (Posts: 776; Member since: 28 Sep 2013)
iPhone owners are more prone to electric shocks because of its metal casing. Most phones have a plastic casing, which is a poor conductor of electricity.
48. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
Why would we be hiding? This is for apple to deal with, not us. I use only what comes in the box, and never have I had an issue, only superb performance. "All hiding away......" For what?
49. remtothemax (Posts: 238; Member since: 02 May 2012)
not that i use apple or am an "ifan," but the reason people are not complaining is that this isn't even about apple. apple doesn't have a pr problem, terrible kirf companies have a pr problem. the only message i am getting from each of these cases is don't buy anything designed by the chinese. stick to foreign companies. apple shouldn't be doing anything. the chinese government should be doing something, because if anything these cases have shown why you should always buy apple products and why you should never buy anything designed in china.
52. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
Well said, there's a reason this keeps happening in china and neighboring places. +1
2. Obama (Posts: 13; Member since: 10 Oct 2013)
Very Sad. The phone makers should learn from these incidences. Now should be the time to invest in making the device safer instead of just concentrating on making phone with better specs.
17. Dingy_cellar_dweller (Posts: 191; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)
Its the metal body conducting the power.
Plastic body phones are safer as less likely to conduct electricity, since they are fully insulated.
3. oNEWorld (Posts: 140; Member since: 01 Aug 2013)
Typical apple device. Overcharging and their devices can't even handle a 3rd party accessory. Prob just a scam to get more ppl to buy apple made chargers instead of cheaper priced ones from amazon.
6. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)
My Sony Xperia (older than that 4s) has been using a third-party charger for years now, and I still haven't experienced any problems yet.
Apparently the trend is: iPads = explode
iPhones = electrocute
I wonder what the upcoming iWatch will do...
28. JakeLee (banned) (Posts: 1021; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)
You could put your suXperia in a Sony microwave, turn it on, then sue Sony.
Uncertified third party charger, game over.
10. JC557 (Posts: 1149; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
Well, it mostly happens in Asian countries where counterfeits are rampant which lack any kind of testing/ certification or any enforcement. A lot of 3rd party stuff in the US has the UL logo/ seal.
53. remtothemax (Posts: 238; Member since: 02 May 2012)
i think it is significant that this seems to only be happening in china where there are no regulations for things. this doesn't seem to happen in places like the us which has a significantly higher apple user base. the problem is china, not apple.
4. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)
Wow, Apple just love CHARGING people don't they?
No? I'll just show myself out then...
5. almostdone (Posts: 130; Member since: 25 Sep 2012)
Jesus, what makes an iDevice so special that when connected to a 3rd party charger can kill someone. I've never heard of a 3rd party micro usb charger killing people. I use tons of them, none have any issues.
Apple needs better safety circuitry with 3rd party chargers.
11. JC557 (Posts: 1149; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
Yeah, as a precaution Apple should look into that as well. Never really had a phone transmit a charge even from a bad powerbrick. Did feel a weird tingling when handling an aluminum shelled iPod/ ipod Nano connected to 1st party stuff (Apple Store). Nothing bad but it felt fuzzy.
67. Augustine (Posts: 776; Member since: 28 Sep 2013)
I confirm feeling the tingling in some occasions on my MacBook as well, another Apple device with a metal casing.
25. nlbates66 (Posts: 311; Member since: 15 Aug 2012)
maybe the fact that the devices are made of metal, which just happens to conduct electricity pretty well...
7. JC557 (Posts: 1149; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
Third party chargers (not cables, big difference) are dangerous regardless of phone manufacturer. I had a faulty name brand microUSB charger that needed to be replaced right away (the brick got hot but never harmed the phone). That said, Apple should consider lowering the price of the charger and replacement cables some so that people, especially those in Asian countries, don't cheap out on them. Also, it would pay for these people to actually start caring about certifications of their equipment, like looking for the UL logo or buying from a reputable store.
Same situation when it comes to power supplies in a PC. Go the cheap route then POP your motherboard gets fried along with other components.
34. VZWuser76 (Posts: 1754; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
While I agree with you to an extent, I wonder if as others are saying, that a phone with a plastic or nonconductive casing would insulate you better that a metal or conductive casing like on the iPhone or the HTC One/Max. Even a phone case or bumper made of nonconductive material would help in that event, assuming none of the metal casing is exposed to touch.
56. JC557 (Posts: 1149; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
The thing is that anodized aluminum aren't really all that conductive.
69. Augustine (Posts: 776; Member since: 28 Sep 2013)
Though a non-conductive material would prevent an electric shock, a bad changer, OEM or third-party, could still cause the circuit to catch fire or the battery to explode. Of course, between both choices, I'd rather not be electrocuted. But there's a third choice: properly using a properly designed, UL-rated charger, OEM or third-party.
78. JC557 (Posts: 1149; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
Yeah, I'm definitely not one to defend Apple but in this case it would be best to not buy cheap non-certified (by a third party safety group) charger. It can and usually does lead to bad incidents involving other products and not just Apple (like those power strips lacking a UL seal).
12. darkvadervip (Posts: 341; Member since: 08 Dec 2010)
Sounds like Samsung giving away free 3rd party chargers to take away sales from apple!
19. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)
Logic is flawed. A dead customer is not a good customer to Samsung at all.
29. JakeLee (banned) (Posts: 1021; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)
Yours is flawed.
The aim would be not a dead customer, but feeding trolls like you with such a headline.
68. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
Boom goes the dynamite +1. I simply love the way you keep mailing him look like a complete fool/troll.
14. spectrums (Posts: 127; Member since: 14 Nov 2013)
Oh God, BombPhone From Apple :) Attention For All Iphone User.
15. janjhel1907 (Posts: 11; Member since: 21 Jun 2013)
its not about 3rd party chargers, its about phone manufacturer, even android metal phones uses third party chargers but doenst encounter this problems..
23. Tråget (Posts: 3; Member since: 14 Nov 2013)
Yeah, this really sounds ridiculous. Ain't buying it for a second. Seems as likely as the man hurdled across the room.
This is just someone trying to give the rotten apple some bad press.
26. Andrewtst (Posts: 353; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)
Don't use phone when charging, some more the iPhone is made with Metal.
30. oNEWorld (Posts: 140; Member since: 01 Aug 2013)
waiting for DarkkkJediii to come to apples defense... in 3..2...1.
31. JakeLee (banned) (Posts: 1021; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)
Your spell backfired.
You lost 49 hp.
You are minusFortyEightWorld now.
40. Username. (banned) (Posts: 74; Member since: 25 Nov 2013)
And Ninetysix, bucky, Ardent1, .....
Don't rely on Dark, he won't have great inceptions to back this up.
54. Ninetysix (Posts: 1669; Member since: 08 Oct 2012)
I'm an Android user broski (Galaxy S4).
55. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
The dummy thinks everyone I'm cool with on this sites an iPhone user. Maybe he should also ask Smurf, whateverman, androiddownsouth, android4u, tedkord, and several others, and doesn't realize I'm an android user as well. Dudes 3 days into being a site member, and already trolling, and making enemies. What a loser. +1 Ninteysix
51. darkkjedii (Posts: 12345; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
See post #48, also I'm glad you've become so obsessed with me. Just look at the profile pic, I simply oozzzzz cool. I've got two new fantrolls, you and lame username. Username says "he won't have great inceptions to back this up" In post #40 whatever the heck that means. Dude comments like he's 9, or something. Oneworld keep the attention coming, there's a reason I'm the popular cat on this site.
59. JakeLee (banned) (Posts: 1021; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)
darkkjedii arrived, inflicting additional 21 damage.
You are now -69World