Danish Consumer Board finds design defect in Apple iBook G4

Apple Store“The consumer protection board in Denmark has found a design defect that causes the Apple iBook G4 to power down and leave a blank screen after about a year of use,” Antone Gonsalves reports for InformationWeek.

Gonsalves reports, “The Consumer Complaints Board of the National Consumer Agency sent the iBook to an independent electronics lab after receiving regular complaints from Apple customers in Denmark. Delta found that the problem stemmed from a solder joint that loosened slightly every time the iBook was turned off and on.”

“The board said its findings could have global implications, claiming that ‘thousands’ of Apple customers all over the world have tried to get the company to acknowledge the flaw and replace the computers. ‘The question now is whether Apple is going to go on denying that there is a design flaw in the same type of computer in the world outside Denmark’s borders,’ the board said,” Gonsalves reports.

Full article here.


  1. Interesting. Wonder what sort of implications this might have for Apple?

    Being the company that they are, and if they’re offered the research materials and evidence that were used to come to this conclusion, do you think they would take the high road?

    I’d like to think they would…

    Interesting story MDN…

  2. I hope that this will be resolved as quickly as the zero day findings.

    It is my understanding that all MacBooks are under warranty (how long). It would be simple to return them and have the joint soldered properly or replaced.

    There is a lot of goodwill Apple could get if they get on their skates.

  3. My wife and I have an iBook each, and we’ve both experienced this problem. In addition, my airport card doesn’t work anymore, and my screen has always been dimmer than my wife’s iBook.

    I love OS X and most Apple products, but I think Apple cut too many corners in trying to bring the cost of the iBook down.

    Now, I’m saving for a MacBook Pro.

  4. @Crabapple

    According to the story the affected computers are iBook G4’s, not MacBooks.

    My wife has an iBook G4 thats 3 1/2 years old. I don’t think the on/off button has been used more than a dozen times.

    It’s been a flawless computer. It had AppleCare but we never used it.

  5. This is a manufacturing defect, not a design flaw, and isn’t the same thing as attempting to defraud customers as the Danish rwould have you believe. If it were, all iBooks of this vintage would have this problem.

    They don’t, only a small number.

    Apple still needs to make good to it’s customers, though.

  6. The iBook G4 had a one year warranty. It was 3 years if you bought Applecare. Why didn’t you?

    If Apple is going to repair laptops that are out of warranty, I have a powerbook 180 that had a CPU burnout 9 years after I bought it.

    Apple should stand by their products. Just send me a new MacBook.

  7. I Have a mid 2005 12inch iBook G4 1.2GHz ( 30GB HD, 768 MB of Ram, Combo Drive) with Mac OS X 10.4.9 Tiger.

    I’m a college student and it’s had it’s bumps in my book filled Back pack. I have never had a single issue. I even toss on top of my bed from across my room.

    I’ve been tempted to get a new White MacBook but this iBook has been so good to me, I actually would feel bad if someone else had it or that it is left in the dust. It’s saved my back so many times to hand in last minute work. For the moment I trust nothing else.

    Almost 2 years will be around the corner, I don’t know what this is all about.

  8. I really wish apple would do something about it. My video went out so many times because of that logic board. I had to open it up and put a piece of foam between the casing and the chip to apply pressure on the chip in order for my ibook g4 1.0ghz 14″ to work. It still crashes once in a while because of it.

    The fact theres like 5 sites teaching you how to fix this problem isn’t a good sign.

  9. I had a friend that supposedly experienced this problem, although I never managed to see it with my own eyes. I could only go by his description, but it definitely sounds familiar. Hasn’t happened in a while, though.

    I preferred my iBook G3 over my friend’s iBook G4. Fortunately, I now have a PowerBook G4 that totally rocks! Next up, a MacBook Pro.

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