Samsung had to recall about 2.5 million Galaxy Note 7s after hundreds of reports of battery explosions that caused severe injuries and property damages. About 100 of these explosions happened in the United States. Apple’s iPhone 7 and 7 Plus were one of the biggest beneficiaries of the Galaxy Note 7 mass recall. So, the Apple community was a little shocked when a Reddit user posted an image of what looked like an exploded iPhone 7.
Two iPhone 7 battery incidents reported so far
Reddit user kroopthesnoop from Texas posted images of the damaged iPhone 7, saying “Something happened between the factory and delivery.” The pictures show a blackened phone and a mingled box. However, unlike Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 that would explode while charging due to battery defects, this one exploded while in transit. The phone was pre-ordered by Reddit user kroopthesnoop’s co-worker.
An Apple account executive contacted the said customer to get the device replaced. As if that wasn’t enough to scare the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus buyers, another report has surfaced showing a damaged iPhone 7 Plus. This one didn’t go up in flames. Instead, its battery has slightly inflated. As a result, the display appears dislodged from the rear shell.
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No reason to panic
Apple is yet to officially comment on the two battery issues. But there is no reason for you to scurry back to Apple, asking for a “safe” iPhone. Lithium-ion batteries used in consumer electronic devices have a higher risk of exploding or catching fire. That’s because they store so much energy in such a small space, where combustible components are separated by ultra-thin walls. It makes them vulnerable to overheating if exposed to damage or high temperatures.
Unlike hundreds of Galaxy Note 7 explosions to due battery defects, the iPhone 7 incidents appear to be isolated cases. One iPhone 7 exploded while in transit and another’s battery got slightly inflated. Isolated incidents have happened in the past, and will happen in the future. Many times, we don’t event notice the explosions.
Is the iPhone 7 defective? Let the numbers talk
What would have happened in these two cases is that the iPhone 7s may have been dropped in such a way that damaged the battery. If there were really a flaw in the iPhone 7 battery, we would know it by now with all the experts tearing the device apart to conduct extreme tests.
Samsung had to recall the Galaxy Note 7 when it had sold only 2.5 million units in ten countries. Though Apple has not revealed how many iPhone 7 and 7 Plus units it sold during the launch weekend, third-party data suggests that the numbers were similar to last year’s iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. Last year, the Cupertino company had sold more than 13 million units of the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus in the launch weekend.
It means there are at least six times as many iPhone 7s in the hands of consumers as there were defective Galaxy Note 7 units. If we still haven’t seen an alarming number of iPhone 7 models exploding, it’s most likely because the phone isn’t defective.