Tech giant Apple has recalled two different types of plug adapter because of a possible risk of electric shock.

Which Adapters?

The affected plugs are the two-prong AC wall plug adapter that came with Macs and some iOS devices between 2003 and 2010, and the three prong plug that was included with Apple’s World Travel Adapter Kit.  Apple USB power adapters are not affected.

The two prong AC wall plug adapter recall concerns those shipped from 2003 to 2015 with Mac and certain iOS devices, included in the Apple World Travel Adapter Kit, and made for use in Continental Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Argentina and Brazil.

Apple’s website says that its three-prong AC wall plug adapters were designed primarily for use in the United Kingdom, Singapore, and Hong Kong, and that the affected plugs are white, with no letters on the inside slot, whereas the newer versions are white with grey on the inside, and with a dimple on the side to make them easier to unplug.

How Can You Tell?

If you’re not sure whether your adapter is one of those affected by the electric shock risk, Apple has provided pictures to help you. Pictures of the two prong adapter can be found here https://www.apple.com/support/ac-wallplug-adapter/ and pictures of the three prong adapter can be found here https://www.apple.com/support/three-prong-ac-wall-plug-adapter/.

What Risk?

Apple says that the two prong Apple AC wall plug adapters in question may break and create a risk of electrical shock if touched.

In the case of the three-prong AC wall plug adapters in question, Apple says that they may break and create a risk of electrical shock if exposed metal parts are touched.

What Next?

If you have one of the affected adapters, Apple is offering an exchange program so you can get a safe replacement adapter from an authorized Apple service provider, or from an Apple retail store (by making an appointment), or by contacting Apple support online.  You will need to know your current adapter’s serial number and Apple provides information about this on the same page where the pictures of the adapter are shown (see the links above in this article).

What Does This Mean For Your Business?

For Apple, publicly explaining the danger, having a recall, and offering customers an exchange is making the best of a bad situation and gives a good PR message to customers.  It is a little alarming though that the adapters (of which there are likely to be many because of the 7-year period for the three prong and 12-year period for the two prong) have been in use could have been dangerous for so many customers in all that time.

For customers who have one of the affected adapters, it may be a surprise and a little worrying that there is an electric shock risk, but its reassuring that Apple is offering a replacement.

It’s not the first time that Apple has had to offer customers help with products. Back in June 2018, following a couple of years of complaints from customers (and a petition), Apple decided to offer free repairs or replacements for the butterfly keyboard on its MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops. At that time, Apple offered to repair/replacement a list of nine eligible models of keyboard.