Apple will update the iPhone 12 in France in response to concerns raised by regulators regarding electromagnetic radiation emissions from the devices. France temporarily halted sales of the 2020 model earlier in the week due to its emissions exceeding permissible levels.
France’s digital minister, Jean-Noel Barrot, confirmed that Apple would release an update for the iPhone 12 in the coming days, with both Apple and Barrot emphasizing that there is no threat to public health from the radiation.
Apple clarified that the issue arose from a specific testing protocol used by French regulators and did not relate to safety concerns, asserting that the device adhered to emission regulations worldwide. A software update for French users will accommodate the French regulatory protocol.
The deadline for Apple to issue the update was set at two weeks, and the French regulatory agency responsible for testing, ANFR, will assess the update to determine whether to lift the sales ban.
The World Health Organization has not found adverse health effects associated with mobile phone use, and no specific illnesses are linked to such radiation. However, exposure to over 40 watts per kilogram (W/kg) of electromagnetic radiation does result in a rise in body temperature, whereas European regulations permit only 4 W/kg for such devices, and the iPhone 12 exceeded this limit by 1.7 W/kg.
Apple faced additional challenges during the week, including criticism for switching from its proprietary “lightning” charging ports to standard USB-C ports on the latest iPhones, a move mandated by EU regulators. Chinese officials also refuted claims of banning iPhones in government buildings and expressed concerns about security incidents related to Apple mobile phones.