Update, 15/9, 2:55 pm, Laura Herijgers: Apple will solve the excessively high radiation values of the iPhone 12 through a software update. Jean-Noel Barrot, French Minister of Digital Transition, reports the action taken by Apple.
He adds the French watchdog will test the devices again after the update before the iPhone 12 can go on sale again. The update will only be available for French Apple users. This is striking since other European authorities are currently carrying out checks on the SAR values themselves or want to discuss the problem with the tech giant.
However, Apple does not foresee any problems with testing from other authorities. In a statement sent to news agency AFP, the company said the problems stem from “a specific testing protocol used by French regulators and not a safety issue.”
Original, 13/9, 2:37 pm, Erik van Klinken: ANFR, the French watchdog for compliance with radiation laws, is banning further sales of the iPhone 12. According to this authority, the specific absorption rate (SAR) is just above the legal maximum, which measures whether a device does not expose the user to too much radiation.
However, the now three-year-old phone could be making a comeback, as ANFR’s reporting indicates. Apple must provide an update that ensures that SAR readings remain within permissible parameters. This limit is 4 Watts/kg for radiation exposure to the limbs and 2 W/kg for the rest of the body. Since the phone will mostly be in users’ pockets, this lower limit is the most important to comply with.
Apple must provide proof that it has fixed the radiation risks before the iPhone 12 can be sold again. There could be a recall if Apple fails to provide a solution.
French junior minister for digital affairs Jean-Noel Barrot told Le Parisien that Apple is expected to respond within two weeks. “If they don’t, I am ready to recall all iPhones 12 in circulation,” he said. The rule is the same for everyone, including the tech giants.”
According to Barrot, other EU member states may also take action. After all, the SAR limits set everywhere in Europe are set by law to prevent increased risk of cancer, for example.