Apple has begun sending out emails to owners of the first-generation iPod nano, reports MacRumors, notifying them that the company has launched a worldwide replacement program for certain units due to overheating batteries.
Apple has determined that, in very rare cases, the battery in the iPod nano (1st generation) may overheat and pose a safety risk. Affected iPod nanos were sold between September 2005 and December 2006.
This issue has been traced to a single battery supplier that produced batteries with a manufacturing defect. While the possibility of an incident is rare, the likelihood increases as the battery ages.
Apple recommends that you stop using your iPod nano (1st gen) and follow the process noted below to order a replacement unit, free of charge.
Under pressure from regulators, Apple agreed to provide replacements for affected units in South Korea in 2009 and in Japan in 2010. With today’s announcement, it appears that the replacement program is now in effect on a worldwide basis.
A claim form is provided on Apple’s support page for the program, and customers check the eligibility of their device, and fill out a claim form for a replacement unit if the device is eligible.
It’s likely that Apple will provide such customers with a current-generation iPod nano, and replacement units will have 90-day warranties from Apple. Those with engraved devices will received plain unpersonalized replacements.
*Update: According to Mashable, Apple has confirmed that they’ll be replacing the 1st-gen iPod nanos with identical 1st-gen replacements – units will not be replaced with an upgraded current-generation iPod nano.