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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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According to a report from Daily News Thailand [Google Translate] (via South China Morning Post), a man in Thailand was pronounced dead after being electrocuted by his iPhone 4s, which he was using while it was charging. The man appeared to be using an unauthorized third-party charger to charge his device, which often do not meet Apple's safety standards.

thaiman_iphone.jpg
Local police found that the smartphone was still connected to a charger in a nearby power outlet, indicating that the victim had likely been talking on the phone while charging it at the same time.

Photographs taken of the charger show a blue model different from the standard white ones that Apple includes with every iPhone, suggesting that it was a cheaply made fake.
This is not the first time this year that an iPhone was accused of being a safety hazard, as a woman in China suffered eye injuries from her iPhone 5 after it exploded while she was on the phone this past August. Additionally, a Chinese man was left in a coma after receiving an electric shock while charging his iPhone 4 in July, which followed the death of a Chinese woman under similar circumstances.

The latter two incidents also reportedly involved the use of unauthorized third-party adapters, with Apple responding to the events by establishing an international third-party USB charger "Takeback Program" offering official replacement chargers for $10 to anyone who turns in a suspect adapter.

Article Link: Thai Man Reportedly Electrocuted After Using a Charging iPhone 4S
 

haruhiko

macrumors 604
Sep 29, 2009
6,534
5,882
Fake chargers take lives.

----------

Electrocution aside, it's quite an attractive charger. Would go great with a blue iPhone 5c.

It's so attractive that you're willing to trade your life with it! :cool:
 

mpantone

macrumors 6502
Mar 20, 2009
450
1
Funny how none of these "claims" come from the U.S., where a majority of the devices are located and used.
Er, no.

The majority of Apple sales occur outside the U.S. these days. Just look at Apple's SEC filings, the 10-Q reports, quarterly financial reports, etc.

China has been Apple's second largest market for a while now, should be Apple's #1 market in the not-too-distant future.

You are living in a delusional world where U.S.A. is still the economic hegemony.
 

Yumbo

macrumors 6502
Oct 1, 2011
334
66
Australia
They replaced my 3rd party charger with a Apple one for FREE here in Australia.
"The system tells us not to charge you".
They took it literally. ☺️
 

SONiC5

macrumors regular
Sep 21, 2012
186
2
U.S.
I had a charger that looked just like that. This makes me not want to touch my phone while it's charging, and I don't even use any of those cheap chargers anymore.
 

woodlandtrek

macrumors member
Jan 21, 2008
70
14
In the cities in China that don't have an official apple store, it can be really hard to tell on something as simple as a charger whether or not it's genuine. (not that it was hard to see in this case, but even if you're trying to be careful there can still be issues).
 

hoylen

macrumors newbie
Dec 3, 2009
10
3
A warning for everyone, not just iPhone users

This is very tragic. But I can't help think there is reporting bias going on. Articles with "iPhone" in the title sells newspapers, but a title like "Person electrocuted by cheap unsafe charger" does not. The later is not even "news."

To put things into perspective, I wonder how many tragic stories with other devices don't get reported? It is not that other smartphone users don't use cheap unsafe chargers -- whether by choice or by being fooled by a fake. And unsafe devices are not just limited to USB chargers.

That's right, "Its not worth your life to save a couple of bucks!" But get that word out to everyone, not just Apple users.
 
Last edited:

chabig

macrumors G4
Sep 6, 2002
11,286
8,988
Let's get this straight. He wasn't electrocuted by the iPhone. He was electrocuted by the charger. The story is false.
 

ThunderSkunk

macrumors 68040
Dec 31, 2007
3,852
4,128
Milwaukee Area
As long as knockoff chargers are 1/10 the price of Apples on a shelf, people will continue to buy knockoffs.

It's in Apples best business interests to expect and accept the minor death toll, merely admonish cheap knockoffs, but otherwise take no action that would eliminate these deaths but cost the company profits.

Money > Lives
 

theBB

macrumors 68020
Jan 3, 2006
2,453
3
Funny how none of these "claims" come from the U.S., where a majority of the devices are located and used.
Why are you surprised? Voltage surge is a lot more common in poor countries and most of them nominally use 220V to begin with. Humidity is also another factor in circuit aging and Thailand, being a tropical country, would experience high humidity quite often.
 

Nevaborn

macrumors 65816
Aug 30, 2013
1,087
327
I hate how MR is still reporting these stories like its the phone thats at fault and a risk. It's cheap 3rd party cables that are the issue.

I got through a good half dozen last yeAr, they would literally fall apart and stop working. An official one cost me £15 but is flawless. Never again will I buy a cheap charging cable.
 

Tubamajuba

macrumors 68020
Jun 8, 2011
2,186
2,444
here
As long as knockoff chargers are 1/10 the price of Apples on a shelf, people will continue to buy knockoffs.

It's in Apples best business interests to expect and accept the minor death toll, merely admonish cheap knockoffs, but otherwise take no action that would eliminate these deaths but cost the company profits.

Money > Lives

"Buy our overpriced chargers or risk death, the choice is yours."

-:apple:

Oh, look at you two warriors of justice. Every texting-and-driving wreck caused by someone using an iPhone is also Apple's fault, right? Corporations all over the world should sue Apple for the money they've lost due to employees being distracted by their iPhones. And did you know that Apple is directly responsible for the destruction of families due to people being on their iPhones and iPads rather than focusing on the people that care about them the most?

I am truly sorry that people have been injured and killed because of these phony chargers. Nobody deserves such a terrible thing. But Apple has done its part- they have made it clear that non-MFi chargers cannot be trusted. They have a program in place that allows you to trade in unauthorized chargers that they have no responsibility for and get a new charger for half the price.

But yes, let's just blame Apple for everything. It's so much easier than exercising personal responsibility!
 

firedept

macrumors 603
Jul 8, 2011
6,278
1,130
Somewhere!
Just do not understand when people are going to get it. Is your life worth saving a few dollars. Plenty of news out there about these tragedies.
 
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