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    Sales of iPhone 12 Suspended in France Over High Radiation Concerns

    In a significant development, the sales of Apple’s iPhone 12 have been temporarily halted in France. The action comes after France’s radiation authority, ANFR, detected radiation levels slightly exceeding the legally permitted limits in the device.

    In a recent interview with Le Parisien, Jean-Noel Barrot, the Junior Minister for the Digital Economy in France, stated that the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) in iPhone 12 was discovered to be just above the stipulated legal benchmarks during tests conducted by ANFR. SAR is a measure of the rate at which energy is absorbed by the human body when exposed to a radio frequency (RF) electromagnetic field.

    Apple, which launched the iPhone 12 in 2020, has been directed to respond to the French authority’s decision within a fortnight. In case the tech giant fails to do so, a potential recall of all iPhone 12 units circulating in the market could be triggered, as highlighted by Barrot, reinforcing that the established rules apply to all players, including industry titans like Apple.

    Interestingly, Barrot pointed out that a software update might be sufficient to resolve the issue at hand. It is important to note that while the type of non-ionizing radiation emitted by smartphones, including iPhones, isn’t as harmful as ionizing radiations such as X-rays, prolonged exposure can still potentially lead to health concerns.

    Over the years, regulatory organizations globally have devised exposure limits for RF radiation, which is predominant in mobile phones, to shield the public from any adverse health effects. Apple’s iPhones, including their other models, usually comply with these legal provisions, with SAR data readily provided for each model illustrating adherence to the permissible ranges defined by various regulatory agencies.

    Moreover, ongoing research into the long-term health repercussions of continuous exposure to RF radiation from mobile phones has revealed mixed findings. A few studies even hint at a possible link between high SAR levels and specific cancer types. Consequently, the current scenario raises pertinent questions about the possible health implications of using mobile phones extensively.

    Responding to this development, the junior minister opined that the move could potentially instigate a “snowball effect,” compelling other European Union member nations to re-evaluate the iPhone 12’s radiation levels. However, it remains speculative at this stage whether other nations will indeed follow suit.

    While this puts iPhone enthusiasts in a dilemma, those unwilling to part with their beloved gadgets can still undertake precautionary measures to minimize RF exposure. Some recommendations include utilizing hands-free accessories like Bluetooth headsets or loudspeakers, opting for texts over long calls, and avoiding phone usage in areas with weak signal reception to prevent the device from augmenting its power output to maintain connectivity.

    Moreover, adhering to safety advice furnished by manufacturers and regulatory bodies can be a prudent strategy.

    This development mirrors France’s pro-active stance in maintaining a diligent digital economy landscape, where the well-being of the citizens is prioritized over commercial interests of towering industries. The situation calls for a balanced perspective where technology meets safety standards, fostering a landscape where advancements do not compromise individual health and safety.

    Author

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    Ajinkya Nair

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