Apple has long warned consumers to use only authorized power adapters with their iOS devices, due to the possibility of burns and electrocution. Now, a new report says those cheap third-party chargers could also be damaging one of the chips in your iPhone 5.
According to UK repair company mendmyi and first reported by iMore, cheap third-party iPhone chargers and USB cables can possibly damage the U2 IC chip on the logic board of the iPhone 5, which might the device to fail to boot up or charge past 1% battery life after the battery drains.
The U2 IC chip controls the charge to the battery, the sleep/wake button, some USB functions, and regulates the charging power to the power IC that actually charges the phone. If it is damaged, your iPhone 5 can fail to turn back on when its powered off. A fresh replacement battery will remedy the issue, but once that battery is depleted, you’re right back where you started from.
Mendmyi reports seeing multiple iPhone 5 units containing a damaged U2 IC chips, and they believe they’ve narrowed the cause down to third-party chargers and USB cables, which don’t regulate the charging voltage properly.
The issue may not be limited to the iPhone 5, as some users have also reported the issue with the iPhone 5c. However, the iPhone 5s uses a different U2 IC component than the iPhone 5 does. If you have an iPhone 5, and have experienced the charging issues while using a third-party adapter, you’ll need to have it looked at by Apple, or an authorized repair outlet.
Apple has long warned against the use of unauthorized third-party cables and chargers, even including a warning pop-up in iOS 7 that appears when an authorized accessory is being used with a device. Following the electrocution of a Chinese woman, allegedly caused by a counterfeit charger, Apple offered a recycling program where customers could turn in counterfeit adapters and receive a credit towards an Apple-authorized charger.