An iPhone 7 Plus user has claimed her smartphone exploded and started spewing smoke even though it wasn’t being used. The video of the incident posted on Twitter by Brianna Olivas shows flames coming from her Rose Gold iPhone 7 Plus with the plastic case melting away. The video has been viewed 1.91 million times and Retweeted by more than 25,000 Twitter users. “So my iPhone 7 plus blew up this morning 🤗 was not even using it, literally no explanation for this,” Olivas said.
Olivas told Mashable, the iPhone 7 Plus that she had bought in January from Sprint, refused to turn on day before yesterday. Upon taking the phone to an Apple Store, she was told by employees everything was fine. “The phone appeared to be working normally again,” she said. However, her iPhone 7 Plus caught fire the next morning while sitting on a dresser.
Olivas, in a direct message to Mashable on Twitter said she was asleep with the phone charging next to her head when her boyfriend grabbed it and put it on the dresser. “He went the the [sic] restroom … and from the corner of his eye he saw my phone steaming and [heard] a squealing noise. By the time he got over to the phone it had already caught fire, he quickly grabbed the phone and threw it in the restroom … as soon as he threw it in the restroom is [sic] blew up and more smoke started coming out of the phone,” she said.
According to Olivas, she has handed over the iPhone 7 Plus to Apple. An Apple spokesperson has told Mashable the company is aware of the video and that it is looking into it. Company representatives are in touch with Olivas. Meanwhile, Olivas has denied using charger of a different company for charging her iPhone, ruling out the possibility of a defective third-party gadget.
This is not the first time an iPhone has caught fire. In October, an Australian man found himself with a burnt iPhone 7 and a scorched car interior. Reports suggest the iPhone model caught fire in a similar fashion to the Galaxy Note 7. Apple had said it is investing the matter. The incident paints a horrifying picture of usage lithium-ion batteries in smartphones, especially when one looks at the Samsung’s Note 7 fiasco.
In a separate incident in August, Gareth Clear from Australia was left with burns on his legs after his iPhone 6 exploded in his back pocket after he fell on it from his mountain bike. The fall reportedly pierced the lithium batter of the device, which resulted in the fire.
The incidents once again puts lithium-ion batteries in smartphones under a cloud, especially when one looks at the Samsung’s Note 7 fiasco.
A report in WSJ earlier had pointed out that while Samsung SDI provided 70 per cent of batteries for Galaxy Note 7, the other 30 per cent for units sold in China were supplied by Chinese manufacturer ATL. Interestingly the report also adds Samsung SDI was listed as supplier for Apple in 2016 as well.
However, Apple denied it is using the same battery as Galaxy Note 7 for its products. An Apple spokeswoman told WSJ, “We do not use the same battery cell type as the recalled Samsung Note 7. And all of our products exceed the highest quality standards and are unaffected by this defect.”
If allegations made by Olivas are to be believed, then Apple needs to step up its investigation to avert a disaster such as Samsung’s. The Galaxy Note 7 fiasco has had a big impact on Samsung’s brand, and has cost the company billions of dollars in damages.