Apple Claims 'Exploding' iPhones Due to Screen Pressure, Not Battery Issues

Last week, reports surfaced that Apple was investigating reports of "exploding" iPhones, spurred by publicity surrounding the case of a French teenager who had reportedly received an eye injury when the screen of his iPhone shattered. French news agency AFP reported earlier this week that additional claims of exploding iPhones had surfaced and that France's official consumer affairs agency had launched an investigation into the reports.

Despite claims to the contrary from those affected by the device failures, Apple claims that the incidents are not the result of any battery issues, but have instead been caused by excessive pressure on the iPhones' screens.

"To date, there are no confirmed battery overheating incidents for iPhone 3GS and the number of reports we are investigating is in the single digits," the firm said in a statement to AFP.

"The iPhones with broken glass that we have analysed to date show that in all cases the glass cracked due to an external force that was applied to the iPhone," the company added.

Apple's sales director in France, Michel Coulomb, met with French consumer affairs minister Herve Novelli today to discuss the issue, and Novelli concurred with Apple's assessment regarding the cause of the failures.

"The first results show, according to Apple management, that the iPhones weren't damaged by a battery defect leading to an explosion, but that there had been a prior shock that cracked the screens," the minister said.

Novelli noted, however, that it remains to be seen whether blame for the cracked screens should be pinned on unreasonable force applied by users or a design flaw on the part of Apple.