French Watchdog Temporarily Suspends IPhone 12 Sales Over Radiation Concerns


In a surprising turn of events, the French National Frequencies Agency (ANFR) has instructed Apple to temporarily halt sales of the iPhone 12 in France. This decision comes after the watchdog found that the device breaches radiation levels set by the European Union. The ANFR has urged Apple to swiftly address this issue to ensure compliance with regulations.

Key Takeaway

The French National Frequencies Agency (ANFR) has ordered Apple to temporarily halt iPhone 12 sales in France due to the device breaching radiation levels. The ANFR found that the phone’s limb absorption rate exceeded the prescribed limit. Apple is expected to address the issue through a software update to ensure compliance with regulatory standards.

A Breach of Radiation Levels

The ANFR’s announcement stated that the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) limit for the iPhone 12 had been exceeded, leading to the instruction for the device’s withdrawal from the French market. SAR is a measure of the amount of radiation absorbed by the body when using a phone. The limit set by the EU for the average absorption over 10 grams of tissue is 2 W/kg, slightly higher than the limit in the U.S. set by the FCC at 1.6 W/kg.

While Apple claims compliance with the EU SAR limit, the ANFR’s tests revealed that the iPhone 12 exceeded the limit of 4 W/kg for limb absorption. This measurement pertains to situations when the phone is held in the hand or placed in a pocket, rather than near the head during a call.

Addressing the Issue

Apple, being able to deploy software updates to its devices, has the opportunity to rectify the problem without resorting to product recalls. It is expected that the company will pursue a software solution to resolve the issue promptly.

France’s junior minister for telecommunications, Jean-Noël Barrot, stated that Apple has a couple of weeks to comply with the country’s regulations before further action is taken. However, the timing of Barrot’s interview with Le Parisien indicates a deliberate effort to raise awareness and address the issue in the public domain.

The Company’s Response

Apple has responded to the ANFR’s findings, emphasizing that the iPhone 12 has received certification from various international regulators and complies with SAR standards worldwide. The company intends to challenge the ANFR’s results while collaborating with the agency to find a resolution.

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