He's doing pretty well for someone who was killed by an electric shock.
A 30-year old man has been in a coma in a Beijing hospital for over ten days after being electrocuted whilst charging his iPhone 4, the second such incident reported in China this week. Wu Jiantong is now breathing unassisted and undergoing hyperbaric oxygen treatment in an effort to help his brain recover, according to …
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Are you serious?
Have you considered reading the story, and in both cases, cheap knockoff chargers were used instead of real Apple gear.
Or are you so loyal to your iBrand that you'll take ANYTHING that's a knockoff, above something trivial - like, er, your safety?
Holy crap, am I standing up for Apple build quality? Quick, someone hand me a Dr Pepper, I have to get this horrible taste out of my mouth...
Interestingly, left my iPhone on the dash in the car yesterday.... For a little while, tried to make a call, almost burnt my hand and noticed a warning triangle on the screen which said,
"Warning your phone is too hot to make a call!"
Didn't explode though.
Thought the warning triangle was cool though.
"Obviously, the Chinese are made of stern stuff. To be able to say "I'm being electrocuted" while being electrocuted is no mean feat."
You're overlooking something important: the major differences in the language.
Chinese and Japanese are what I like to call very "direct" languages, the meaning of a sentence depends a lot on context and doesn't use verbs like we do.
In this case it's more likely he said something in the likes of: "I electrocuted" where the latter would be shortened too.
According to electronic translations he would have said: "Wǒ chùdiàn". And I somewhat imagine that he'd shortened it to "wo chu!".
Which is a lot shorter than "I'm being electrocuted".
Three incidents in a short space of time, all in the same country. A country with an insatiable appetite for knock-offs and a solid reputation for shaky power distribution.
Nothing reported in the rest of the world where the majority of devices are sold.
I'm calling BS on the entire thing.
In China it can be very hard to know what is genuine or fake. You can often buy about 4 different versions of a product and only one is genuine, they all look alike. Due to them being rip off products they're not very forthcoming in terms of putting the manufacturers name on such products either, so you have to look at the PCB for clues.
Just look at all the Foscam IP camera clones for instance, there's loads.
This has nothing to do with where the goods are made evidently. It has everything to do with where goods are designed, the specification of components and whether safety standards are adhered to, if they even exist in the first place.
Cheap junk is cheap junk. Who'd have thought that it costs money to do things properly?
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AND totally unmodified AND using proper chargers
The fanboi community will think that these events are nowt more than attempts by Samsung to discredit their shiny-shiny Apple God.
When will be we seeing the publication of equivalent 'Shock horror, Samsung shiny toy is crap!' news? Nah, thought not, as those wouldn't get the page hits now would they?
ElReg is really sinking to level of the Daily-star here.
"When will be we seeing the publication of equivalent 'Shock horror, Samsung shiny toy is crap!' news? Nah, thought not, as those wouldn't get the page hits now would they?"
Fool! Less than 2 weeks ago the Reg reported a Galaxy that combusted inside a woman's pocket:
I'm no fanboi, but this isn't an issue with Apple. This is about buying cheap, Chinese-made electronic crap and plugging it into the mains. The moral of the story? Don't risk it with chargers; always buy genuine.
While I am no fan of Apple, this is not an Apple story.
It is cautionary tale of how junk electrical rubbish is dangerous. Chargers adapters and the like made in Chinese 'knock off' shops regularly appear in trading standards reports. Has no one seen the shots of these 'devices' exploding or having live parts waiting to be touched?
It is sad that people are dying as a result of this rubbish, but it should urge us all to be selective about what we purchase and use.
Oh and I am NOT suggesting "buy only apple", I am just suggesting to be careful about what one does buy and use.
"Oh and I am NOT suggesting "buy only apple", I am just suggesting to be careful about what one does buy and use."
It's pretty tough when buying these types of things ... who sells good stuff and who sells rubbish? The people that make and sell this stuff have no qualms about applying CE labelling, the double isolation symbol, etc., with no actual safety testing having ever been done. They copy the enclosure of real parts, so it's hard to tell what's what.
For Apple users, if you buy a product from an Apple outlet it is going to be fine (ignoring the very unlikely chance of them having been duped by their own suppliers).
For the rest of us, if it came with your telephone and you bought it in the UK from one of the carriers, it'll be OK.
If you buy a Belkin product from a reputable outlet, you'll also be OK. I cannot think of another name brand off the top of my head - there might be one.
If you buy a no-name product from a PhoneShop type of place I think you're risking it - they can source product from wherever and they'll go for maximum margin whilst assuming that the safety stuff is all fine.
Anything from eBay, Amazon, a market stall, etc., I would say you're asking for trouble.
The only way to be sure is to buy 2, crack one open and look inside, but unless you've got a reasonable grasp of the safety standards, that won't help.
Is it worth risking your life over £20?
Just on the point of the 'they have no problem putting a CE label on it" part.
The CE on many of thsoe devices is china export, not the europian conformance mark. I kinda wish that they'd change the EU one so it's more distinct, since China won't change theirs.
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There was an extensive discussion a few months ago on the Raspberry Pi site about the alleged significance of the China Export mark.
I think they councluded it was irrelevant, but icbw.
Either way, it highlights the uselessness of "tick the box" based quality audit (found everywhere from consumer electronics to stuff that flies commercial passengers), rather than having proper engineers/technicians do properly sampled relevant quality tests at the point where equipment enters into a given market (and before, where appropriate, e.g for stuff that flies commercial passengers).
I have personally seen ... and disassembled, dodgy Chines-manufactured kit with all kinds of official looking certification lables on it. After looking inside, I highly doubt the labels were genuine (in the sense that the equipment they were on had been tested and certified to comply with the regs).
I have also seen Chinese stuff with counterfeit branding, some of it very good.
It's a real problem. How do you know that the cheap wall-wart you just purchased is safe? Short answer: you don't. The solution? Use it safely. Don't handle it when you're soaking wet, just out of the shower. Wear shoes, or stand on dry wood or vinyl flooring. Think before you grab. Use a GFI outlet.
// need an electric shock icon...
Typical - title reads "Another jolt for Apple" but then it says it was not an official charger.
Personally I am amazed people will skimp a few pounds on cheap / copy chargers that clearly are not made to the same standards and for something that's often plugged in 24x7 I'd rather something better made.
I know I'm simply repeating what others have said before me, but THIS WAS A FRICKING KNOCK-OFF CHARGER. Although the facts are not all in yet, the probability that a genuine Apple iPhone was defective to the point of giving an electric shock (as the headline implies, nay states) is pretty much nil.
However never let the facts get in the way of good clickbait, eh Reg?
The majority of phone (and tablet) chargers these days have a plastic earth pin, they are not earthed.....
It's always difficult to tell with these stories what exactly is faulty.
A phone (or tablet) being fed with more than 5-12v should just die (possibly explode), the thin flimsy cable between the charger and the phone should get very upset at carrying something more like mains down it - and the charger itself if being told by the phone to consume more than it is rated for should go bang too.....
If however the charger is crap with very little in the way of safety features AND the phone is a cheap knockoff with very little safety features........
A badly designed and faulty charger could put mains voltage on the USB cable, which could easily carry that voltage and enough current to give a dangerous shock without breaking down. But I don't know if the metal body of a phone would be electrically connected to the charging circuit. Or maybe it could be isolated by a component that would break down under mains voltage. Either way a phone with exposed metalwork would be dangerous. Yet another reason to put your phone in a non-conductive case?
In the most likely scenario, the person grasping the phone would have to be earthed to receive a dangerous shock. For example by also touching anything metal that was earthed, like a water tap or kitchen appliance or by standing on damp ground. There are a lot of possibilities. Touching the phone with one hand and earhing the other would be the most dangerous as the current would pass through the chest and affect the heart.
On a phone with no easily touched metal parts such a fault might not even be noticed, as it might still get charged.
Quite possibly it would need a combination of two faults to give a dangerous shock. With so many people using phones, a statistically rare combination of faults could easily happen in a few cases.
Having been zapped before, I can vouch for mains making you lose muscle control.
It really isn't very funny, neither is trying to explain to SWMBO why the tripswitch just went for the 3rd time in one evening (caused by defective appliance with intermittent mains leakage in element)
The problem is that if a single point failure happens then everything connected to the charger becomes a mains carrier at between 0.1 and 100mA. 10mA is the lower threshold for death.
As the transformer is otherwise isolated the unfortunate person becomes the return path with higher current in damp conditions, bare feet etc.
Yes the phone can work fine but it is a disaster waiting to happen with these cheap chargers, which is why PAT testers use 1KV and over to make sure it can't break down with the slightest mains surge.
Unlike the West, many countries are somewhat economical in their use of circuit breakers.
Typically a house has a meter, which has a supply company breaker to protect their gear. Then there is another breaker where the power feed from the meter enters the premises.
After that there is a junction box where all the house wiring is attached to. This means be it light, power socket or water heater the SOLE protection is a breaker way, way too high in rating for individual outlets.
So when an attached appliance catches fire/shorts the 40 Amp breaker almost guarantees a dangerous situation.
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