Saturday, April 28, 2007

Battery Recall^WExchange

Just found, via the interwebs, that the battery in my 15″ Macbook Pro was recalled^Weligible for exchange almost a year ago although not for safety risks, merely because “… batteries supplied to Apple do not meet our high standards for battery performance.” [sic]. So that’s something. Anyway, since this is useful information, I wanted to add information to hal-info such that other Macbook Pro users would benefit as well. By getting spammed with a popup like this

Useful feature in g-p-m

But as it turns out this data is not easily available

$ cat /proc/acpi/battery/BAT0/info
present: yes
design capacity: 55000 mWh
last full capacity: 47150 mWh
battery technology: rechargeable
design voltage: 10800 mV
design capacity warning: 250 mWh
design capacity low: 100 mWh
capacity granularity 1: 10 mWh
capacity granularity 2: 10 mWh
model number: ASMB012
serial number:
battery type: LION012
OEM info: SMPN012

meaning it’s hard to match on anything sensible from the fdi file. Maybe this is because it’s a Smart Battery? FWIW, I can see that the sbs driver is loaded. Lazyweb, please help :-) - as comments on my blog are busted, please provide answers personally to me or, preferably, the hal list (requires subscription).

Btw, I couldn’t find this information by poking around in Mac OS X either… but it must be there; I mean, normal non-smart batteries record make, model and serial numbers just fine via ACPI. That’s what we use to tag other recalled battery units. So I’m sure it’s possible to get at. And if Apple wanted, they could easily have similar mechanisms for displaying notifications similar to the ones we have in GNOME. But I can understand it would hurt their bottom line. I guess.. this is one interesting aspect of getting your OS from the same vendor as where you get your hardware.

Anyway, I filled out the form and a new battery is on it’s way. I guess, uh, thanks Apple. Just wish you had notified me earlier and I wouldn’t have to find out this way ;-) .

Update: I suppose this isn’t technically a Product Recall; Apple specifically uses the word Exchange instead. I guess, from a legal point of view at least, there’s a difference. To me, as a consumer, it’s doesn’t make huge difference however… hmm.. maybe we need to add a new property info.is_eligible_for_exchange to the HAL spec to avoid using the word “recall” at all in such situations. I mean, to, uh, cover our collective asses from angry hardware vendors.

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