iPhone overheating problems could see aid from new patent

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
As reports of battery problems causing discoloration on the white model iPhone 3GS continue to grow, a patent from Apple published for the first this week looks to address both internal and external elements that could have adverse effects on a device's power source.



Apple continues to adopt non-user-replaceable batteries across its entire line of mobile electronics. As it does, the longevity and performance of those power sources becomes an even more crucial element of the technology in iPhones, iPods and unibody MacBooks.



The new patent aims to address the physical problems inherent in the batteries in electronic devices: namely, the fact that pressures and overheating can inflict damage on battery cells.



The patent, if approved Thursday, would grant the Cupertino, Calif., company "systems and methods for monitoring and responding to forces influencing batteries of electronic devices are provided."



"Pressure can build up within a battery as the battery operates, for example, due to heat," the application reads. "Pressure can also be applied to an external portion of a battery, such as by a physically adjacent object. These pressures generate forces that influence effects of the battery, such as the size and shape of the battery. Although some magnitudes of such forces can be normal, more intense forces may be indicative of an impending battery failure. Accordingly, what is needed are systems and methods for monitoring and responding to forces influencing a battery."



The patent describes a "battery force sensor" that would be able to detect battery problems. If triggered, the sensor could produce an "alarm and a graphical user interface," the patent reads. Similar elements of such a sensor may already be implemented in the iPhone, which can inform the user that the phone "needs to cool down before you can use it."



The approval comes as reports and photos of the white iPhone 3GS overheating and discoloring continue to grow on the Web. The first-hand accounts show the back of white iPhone 3GS models turning brown or pink in certain areas, usually toward the edges.



iPhone 3GS with discoloration on the left; iPhone 3G on the right.



While Apple has declined to comment on the latest issue and even took to closing a large discussion thread on its forum centering on the subject, it's long maintained on its support page a document on "acceptable operating temperatures," for its iPhone models, which was updated last week to take into account the 3GS model.



Triggers for the issue can vary, but usually follow sometime after intensive activity that generates significant heat, such as using 3G data extensively, playing games or navigating with GPS. It's also suspected that engaging in regular tasks for a long time, such as playing music or browsing the web on Wi-Fi, can also cause the symptoms.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 72
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    I have a feeling this patent will become a reality.
  • Reply 2 of 72
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,197member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    As reports of battery problems causing discoloration on the white model iPhone 3GS continue to grow,





    'continue to grow'. I have seen one report on one website that has been repeated by every other site. no massive runs of "that happened to me too" threads or anything. in fact I've seen a lot of folks saying they have just that phone and nada has happened to them so far.
  • Reply 3 of 72
    kasperkasper Posts: 941member, administrator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by charlituna View Post


    'continue to grow'. I have seen one report on one website that has been repeated by every other site. no massive runs of "that happened to me too" threads or anything. in fact I've seen a lot of folks saying they have just that phone and nada has happened to them so far.



    This issue happened to one of our devices. We did not cover the original story until we saw it with our own eyes. The unit has been returned to Apple.



    Kasper
  • Reply 4 of 72
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kasper View Post


    This issue happened to one of our devices. We did not cover the original story until we saw it with our own eyes. The unit has been returned to Apple.



    What signs were there of this issue? For example, the battery not holding a charge in stand by mode, hot to touch in standby mode, system crashes or lockups?
  • Reply 5 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kasper View Post


    This issue happened to one of our devices. We did not cover the original story until we saw it with our own eyes. The unit has been returned to Apple.



    Kasper



    The discoloration issue, or the overheating issue? There is, of course, a difference.



    If it was the discoloration issue, as implied by your statement, why on earth didnt you take a picture?
  • Reply 6 of 72
    mazda 3smazda 3s Posts: 1,554member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kasper View Post


    This issue happened to one of our devices. We did not cover the original story until we saw it with our own eyes. The unit has been returned to Apple.



    Kasper



    Oh snap!



    Was it the discoloration problem? If so, did you take any pictures before sending it back? I have a black 3G S and luckily haven't been stricken by overheating problems yet.
  • Reply 7 of 72
    macinthe408macinthe408 Posts: 1,050member
    Awesome!



    Can I go into an Apple Store and get this patent applied to my discolored white iPhone right now?!



    I called and they said they haven't arrive yet, however.
  • Reply 8 of 72
    mactrippermactripper Posts: 1,328member
    Quote:

    the phone "needs to cool down before you can use it."



    Oh yes, this will go over real well with people.





    I guess this means the thermal wall has been reached with iPhones.





    Ok, what's the "next big thing" we can lust over?
  • Reply 9 of 72
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    What signs were there of this issue? For example, the battery not holding a charge in stand by mode, hot to touch in standby mode, system crashes or lockups?



    I'd suppose I should buy a black one then? Tomorrow is da day!
  • Reply 10 of 72
    steviet02steviet02 Posts: 594member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    What signs were there of this issue? For example, the battery not holding a charge in stand by mode, hot to touch in standby mode, system crashes or lockups?



    Yes that happens and all the people that were complaining about in on apples forums were silenced when all the threads were removed from the forum. You guys need to knock the shit off like this company can't do any wrong. There is a definite problem.
  • Reply 11 of 72
    steviet02steviet02 Posts: 594member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    I'd say I should buy a black one then? Tomorrow is da day!



    Yeah I'd buy a black one in 2010...
  • Reply 12 of 72
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post


    Yes that happens and all the people that were complaining about in on apples forums were silenced when all the threads were removed from the forum. You guys need to knock the shit off like this company can't do any wrong. There is a definite problem.



    Seriously sometimes I think he's paid by Apple the way he professionally always comes up with some excuse or the other. I mean he does have over 10,000 posts.
  • Reply 13 of 72
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post


    Yes that happens and all the people that were complaining about in on apples forums were silenced when all the threads were removed from the forum. You guys need to knock the shit off like this company can't do any wrong. There is a definite problem.



    Having a batch of bad CE, especially with batteries, is commonplace, as was stated previously, but your assertion that Apple should be forced to support obnoxious, hyperbolic statements about a massive recall and exploding phones is ridiculous.
  • Reply 14 of 72
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post


    Yeah I'd buy a black one in 2010...



    why- will it be with Verizon then?
  • Reply 15 of 72
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    I mean he does have over 10,000 posts.



    That is 10K objective and relevant posts to your zero.
  • Reply 16 of 72
    steviet02steviet02 Posts: 594member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    Seriously sometimes I think he's paid by Apple the way he professionally always comes up with some excuse or the other. I mean he does have over 10,000 posts.



    It's not even solely solipsism, it's others that will come in after him and claim bs or say the work around is to shut everything off in the phone to prevent it...
  • Reply 17 of 72
    steviet02steviet02 Posts: 594member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    Having a batch of bad CE, especially with batteries, is commonplace, as was stated previously, but your assertion that Apple should be forced to support obnoxious, hyperbolic statements about a massive recall and exploding phones is ridiculous.



    Ok, so we jumped from a thread that was filled with multiple posters having the same issue to "hyperbolic statements about a massive recall and exploding phones is ridiculous.".
  • Reply 18 of 72
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post


    It's not even solely solipsism, it's others that will come in after him and claim bs or say the work around is to shut everything off in the phone to prevent it…



    We all said that if that happens get it replaced because it’s faulty. What part of that is so hard to understand? The idea that getting a bad CE means that they are all duds is simply the most absurd thing I’ve ever heard on this forum, save for Teckstud’s postings.
  • Reply 19 of 72
    steviet02steviet02 Posts: 594member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    why- will it be with Verizon then?



    No, you won't be a able to use your phone and Safari at the same time... They all have their faults...
  • Reply 20 of 72
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post


    Ok, so we jumped from a thread that was filled with multiple posters having the same issue to "hyperbolic statements about a massive recall and exploding phones is ridiculous.".



    Multiple now means everyone is having a problem and a massive recall and class action lawsuit will be filed?



    All CE will have problems from time to time!
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