France Orders Apple to Stop Selling iPhone 12 Over Radiation Concerns

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French Regulatory Action

France has taken the step of ordering Apple to halt the sale of its iPhone 12, citing concerns about the device emitting excessive electromagnetic radiation. The country’s regulatory authority responsible for radio frequencies, ANFR, has also instructed Apple to address the issue in existing phones. ANFR has advised Apple that if a software update cannot resolve the problem, the company must recall all iPhone 12 units ever sold in France. However, it’s worth noting that the World Health Organization (WHO) has previously emphasized that low-level electromagnetic fields from mobile phones are not harmful to humans.

Background on iPhone 12 and Controversy

The iPhone 12 was initially launched in September 2020 and continues to be available worldwide. Apple has responded to the French regulator’s action by disputing the findings, citing lab results from both the company itself and third parties. These results indicate that the iPhone 12 complies with all relevant rules governing radiation levels. Apple contends that the device is recognized as being in compliance with radiation regulations globally.

French Minister’s Statement

France’s digital minister, Jean-Noel Barrot, stated that the decision to stop iPhone 12 sales in the country is due to radiation levels exceeding the permissible threshold. Specifically, the ANFR found that the iPhone 12’s Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) exceeded the legal limit. Barrot has given Apple a two-week window to respond to the directive. Should the company fail to do so, a recall of all iPhone 12 units in circulation may be ordered. Barrot emphasized that the same rules apply to all, including tech giants.

Potential Wider Impact

France intends to share its findings with other regulators within the European Union, potentially setting off a chain reaction of similar actions. The ANFR’s SAR evaluation considers two distinct usage scenarios: one where the phone is in close contact with a person’s body (referred to as “membre” or limb check), and another where the phone is slightly further away, such as in a bag or jacket pocket. The iPhone 12’s SAR measurement exceeded the limit for the former scenario, but not the latter.

Additional Context

Interestingly, this regulatory action unfolded on the same day that Apple unveiled its latest offering, the iPhone 15. The iPhone 15 marks the first time since 2012 that Apple has featured an alternative charging port, with the company also planning to sell adapters for compatibility with existing cables. Concurrently, the Chinese foreign ministry has refuted media reports suggesting that government agencies had instructed staff to cease using iPhones. China stated that it has not issued any laws, regulations, or policies prohibiting the use of Apple products.

SOURCE: Ref Image from WE News-

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