Battery Recall Could Cost Sony Over $170 Million

The costs are to support the recall programs for both Dell and Apple laptops.
MANHASSET, N.Y. — Sony Corp. said the cost of supporting the laptop battery recall programs of Dell and Apple Computer would likely range between ¥ 20 to 30 billion (approximately $170 to $256 million).

Japan-based Sony designed the lithium-ion cells for battery packs used in the Dell and Apple laptops. Dell last week recalled 4.1 million battery packs, while Apple recalled 1.8 million packs Thursday.

Both computer makers reported instances of the battery packs overheating and causing the laptops to catch fire.

In a statement, Sony said microscopic metal particles in the recalled packs may come into contact with other parts of the battery cell, causing short circuits. While the pack is supposed to shut off when a short circuit occurs, overheating can occur on occasion, with the potential arising due to variations in system configurations found in different notebook computers.

Sony said it anticipates no further recalls of the battery packs using its cells. The company added it has introduced additional safeguards into its battery manufacturing process to address safety concerns.

So far, neither Dell or Apple have taken any action against Sony, and a Dell spokesperson told EE Times in an interview the company would continue to use Sony's lithium-ion cells.

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