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Apple refuses frozen iPhone repair

Cold customer service for iced phone user

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Apple has refused to repair an iPhone 4 on the grounds that it was used in an ambient temperature below zero, in breach of the specifications.

Norwegian rag Bergens Tidende reports it was -12 outside as Lenin Kristin Løvvik connected her iPhone to the car stereo for the provision of musical accompaniment on the way in to work.

Løvvik reckons the inside of the car was up to 20 degrees by the time the iPhone conked out on her. However, she told the paper, Apple is sticking to the line that the iPhone is not spec'ed for sub-zero operations.

Apple is maintaining its traditional silence on the matter, politely refusing to comment as ever, but the iPhone specifications are pretty clear that it's a phone designed for Californian beaches rather than Highland mountains.

iPhones don't need to be coddled all the time - when not in use an iPhone 4 will happily drop down to -20 centigrade according to the specifications, but Apple won't promise successful operation until the ice starts melting. That compares badly with the competition: the Samsung Galaxy S recommends that you try to keep it above freezing, but provides no get-out clause if you don't, while the Sony Ericsson X10 reckons it's tough enough to play Angry Birds at -10 at least.

This could become increasingly important. The UK might not be as cold as Norway, but the northern parts have already seen temperatures down well below the -12 that caused the iPhone such problems. ®

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