In what appears to be a rare catastrophic Apple hardware failure, Jason Colon’s Airpods reportedly blew up on him during his usual gym workout, impelling Apple to investigate the issue. According to the gym-goer, he was listening to music at the local LA Fitness Club in St. Petersburg when white smoking started frothing out of the right unit’s chassis, reports NBC affiliate WFLA.
Apple says it is investigating the claims, which could have resulted in serious burns had the man not quickly removed the allegedly faulty gadget. Jason Colon, from Tampa, ran to get help after he noticed the white smoke billowing from the device. When he came back, he found that the right earbud had exploded, with the case showing signs of charring and the internal components laid bare.
Mr Colon says he believes the gadget’s battery was responsible for the damage.
Speaking to local news station News Channel Eight, he added: “It’s the craziest thing I ever went through. I didn’t see it happen, but I mean, it was already fried! You can see the flame damage.”
What caused the failure is at this point unknown, but Apple told the news organization that it is investigating the matter and will contact Colon in the near future.
Fortunately, Colon’s experience seems to be an outlier, as no other AirPods owners have reported malfunctions of this magnitude. Though the company has not commented, both of the affected iPhone units were in for repair, suggesting a correlation with Apple’s recent decision to cut prices of out-of-warranty battery replacements. With more customers bringing in their old, potentially degraded, iPhones for service increases the odds of accidents. The possibility of failure is only increased when mixing in lithium-ion batteries.