When news arose recently of the Japanese government ordering Apple to address issues with the original iPod nanos overheating, I didn’t think all that much about it. They’re almost five years old, and there have been four generations of nano since then. I also thought that this, like many issues when it comes to Apple products, had been overblown, and was perhaps based on only one or two faulty iPods.
So you can imagine my surprise when Murray Gill, an Australian Macworld reader, emailed me this morning with pictures of his very own first-gen iPod nano that gave up the ghost – rather spectacularly – just last week.
“The term overheating is an understatement,” says Gill. “It was more like an explosion.”
“Whilst lying in bed the unit suddenly started hissing loudly and emitting huge plumes of white smoke. It got extremely hot, the case split partially apart and the smoke filled the room. I was able to fling it onto the floor where it melted the carpet. I shudder to think what may have happened if I had been asleep.”
“I have no agenda here and am quite a Mac fan but wanted to draw it to your attention as I feel it could present a public safety issue. Hopefully mine was a one off, but you never know.”
Gill noted that Apple was happy to take the faulty nano from him in exchange for a $200 discount on a new iPod (the current base nano is $199), so there is hope for others in this situation. However, like the Japanese government, Gill wants further explanation from Apple on the issue: “I’m a little disappointed that there has been no follow up from their tech guys.”
When approached for comment, an Apple spokesperson asked for more details so she could follow it up further with Gill.
Images of the dead iPod nano are shown below. Click any of them for a larger image.