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Apple ordered to pay Tokyo woman $7,400 after iPod nano causes injury

A Tokyo woman who sustained burns to her hand when her iPod nano overheated has been awarded damages to the tune of 600,000 yen ($7,400).

According to a Wall Street Journal report, the music player overheated while it was recharging and became so hot that it seared the desk on which it was resting and burned the woman’s hand.

The iPod nano has been a rather troublesome gadget for Apple in recent years, with overheating issues hitting the headlines on a number of occasions.

As recently as last November, the Cupertino company announced a worldwide replacement program for first-generation nanos purchased between September 2005 and December 2006 because the battery inside some of the devices was at risk of overheating, making them a potential safety risk.

At the time, Apple issued a statement saying: “This issue has been traced to a single battery supplier that produced batteries with a manufacturing defect. While the possibility of an incident is rare, the likelihood increases as the battery ages.”

Prior to the worldwide replacement program, Apple offered to replace the same device in South Korea in 2009, and a year later it implemented yet another replacement program in Japan. It’s not clear if that program was the result of the incident which turned up in the Tokyo court this week.

Late last year, there were reports of other Apple devices allegedly going up in smoke, though the precise causes of the incidents haven’t been verified. In November an Australian air traveler claimed that his iPhone exploded shortly after his flight landed, while in the same month a Brazilian woman reportedly awoke in the middle of the night to find her Apple handset emitting sparks and smoke.

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