Knockoff Chargers Blamed for Two iPhone 4 Electrocutions

Media outlets say the 23-year-old Chinese woman fatally electrocuted while she talked on her charging iPhone and a Chinese man who’s now in a coma both appeared to be using knockoff chargers for their iPhone 4 devices.

Knockoff chargers often don’t meet standards for electrical safety; they’re made by low-cost suppliers that in turn offer cheaper pricing than Apple.

The woman died this month and now reports are surfacing about another citizen in China, a man named Wu Jian Tong, who was plugging in an iPhone 4 to a third-party charger. Tong’s sister told reporters she heard her brother shout, "I’m getting shocked," and that she felt "needle-like pains on my fingertips" when she tried to unplug the iPhone.

Tong remains in a coma; doctors say he suffered severe oxygen deprivation to his brain as the result of electrical shock.

This isn’t the first time reports have surfaced about iPhones having electrical or battery-related hazards. Some users have reported smoke coming from their devices, and in some instances, small fires starting.

Apple is expected to release its seventh-generation iPhone, the 5S, later this year. The company has promised to investigate the Chinese woman’s death and has yet to release a statement regarding Tong.

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