Nokia has refused to pass comment after fierce criticism on the latest incident of an exploding battery on a Nokia handset.
The incident was flagged on the BBC’s Watchdog show, which concluded that Nokia offered inadequate support to customers.
Nokia was criticised for not properly warning UK consumers about the faulty BL-5C battery, which is used in over 50 popular Nokia handset including several N-Series handsets such as the N70.
It is not the first time the over-heating problem has occurred on a Nokia device involving batteries. This video published by Mobile in the spring actually captured the moment a device overheated, ready to burst into flames.
With this more recent incident, Nokia has been criticised by Watchdog for not doing enough to alert customers to the potential risk. The manufacturer sent out a notice in August to a number of press sources about the risk of the BL-5C battery overheating. It also put the notice on its website.
Watchdog said that in Japan more effort was made to alert customers of the risk, as each customer was sent a warning text.
The show also criticised Nokia's warning notice itself for being inaccurate.
The notice also said that ‘no serious injury or property damage had occurred - a claim which several consumers speaking on Watchdog challenged. One said she had been burnt and admitted to hospital after heavy smoke inhalation.
Nokia dismissed the problem as rare and said it could have been caused by other factors such as counterfeit batteries, product misuse, liquid damage and dog bites. However, Watchdog has itself attracted criticism for being unbalanced in some of its reporting in the past.
The problems with the BL-5C battery stem from it warming up because of a short circuit, which is said to cause a loud explosion when - in rare cases - they explode. Nokia has suffered a series of cases of overheating phones in recent years, often caused by counterfeit batteries used by third parties.
The Nokia caution applied to around 46 million batteries manufactured by Matsushita Battery Industrial Co. Nokia said at the time of releasing the statement that around 100 cases have been reported, but it refused to comment on how many cases have now occurred.
The problems are confined to BL-5C batteries made by Matsushita between December 2005 and November 2006.