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Dell battery recall

Ugly, ugly, ugly.

And Sony is financially responsible.

Dell is recalling 4.1 million notebook computer batteries
because they could erupt in flames, the company said yesterday. It will be the largest safety recall in the history of the consumer electronics industry, the Consumer Product Safety Commission said.

Dell has reported to the safety agency that it documented six instances since December in which notebooks overheated or caught on fire. None of the incidents caused injuries or death. Dell said the problems were a result of a manufacturing defect in batteries made by Sony.

The safety agency said the batteries’ problems were not unique to Dell, meaning that other companies using Sony batteries might also have to issue recalls. Sony has sold its batteries to most of the major computer makers.

The recalled batteries were used in 2.7 million Dell computers sold in the United States and 1.4 million sold overseas. The total is about 18 percent of Dell’s notebook production during the period in question.

Depending on how many of the batteries are still in use, the cost of the recall could exceed $300 million. Dell refused to estimate the cost, but said the recall would not materially affect its profits. Sony, which affirmed yesterday that its batteries were responsible, said it was “financially supporting” Dell in the recall.

Dell Will Recall Batteries in PC’s – New York Times

Not to mention but this is old news…

Sony was the designer and build partner for Apple’s original PowerBook 5300 battery, which would have been the first mass-marketed laptop with an L-Ion battery.

Introduced in the fall of 1995, only about 1500 of the powerBook 5300 units had shipped when the battery – again, designed and built by Sony – caught fire in an Apple lab. A separate overheating incident at Apple later that week caused the company to pull all the stops to recall and destroy the Sony L-Ion cells. Customers all received two NiMH batteries as compensation.

Dell Issues Laptop Battery Recall