Friday, August 28, 2009

VERITAS: FUMBLE - EXPLODING iPHONES


The European Union is investigating, the government of France is investigating, there are now reports of incidents in Asia and even a TV reporter in Seattle has uncovered American cases of Apple iPhones allegedly overheating and exploding. In one case a French teenager suffered an eye injury when his iPhone’s glass screen burst into tiny shards of glass. Apple says it is looking into it, and has a European company official set to meet with France’s consumer ministry. But it just doesn’t seem like Apple is really on top of this from a crisis communications perspective. For example, an Apple spokesperson told wire service Reuters that the company was aware of the reports but would not comment until it received more information. In other cases, Apple officials have said they will not comment until consumers with complaints send in their devices. Really? Leave worldwide reports like this unanswered? Either you believe these smart phones are safe or you are aware of some sort of problem emerging (allegedly caused by lithium ion batteries overheating), but which is it? For a company as web-savvy as Apple, this is just astonishing. The Internet is rife with news stories and social media sites buzzing about this issue. Apple’s lack of communications leadership on this makes it ripe for a Fumble.

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