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Apple to Replace First-Gen iPad nanos in Japan

Following years of back-and-forth with Japanese regulators, Apple has agreed to replace any first-generation iPod nano music players that experience overheating. Apple says the problem has been traced to a single battery supplier, and that the problem does not happen in any other iPod nano model.

Previously, in Japan Apple had been offering to replace batteries in first-generation iPod nanos that overheated. However, it was difficult for customers to find information about the battery replacement program, so last week Japan’s Ministry for Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) ordered Apple to publish an “easy to understand” statement explaining how users experiencing an overheating problem with the first-generation iPod nanos could receive support.

The original iPod nanos went on sale in late 2005 and were available for over a year. Apple says it has received “very few” reports of overheating incidents; METI says it has received about 60 reports of incidents, including four cases were users received minor burns. The issue with the devices has been known for years; METI issued a warning about the devices two years ago, and Apple launched a voluntary battery replacement program. Initial reports of overheating incidents emerged in early 2008.