A few days ago, the National Frequency Agency (ANFR) banned the sale of the iPhone 12 in the country because it found that the device emitted more than the electromagnetic waves authorized by European regulations. His Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) was above the legal limit.
The agency issued an ultimatum to Apple, asking it to use “all available means” to resolve the problem quickly, or face the recall of all iPhone 12s ever sold in France. Today, Apple responded by promising to release a software update that would resolve the dispute.
It’s unclear what the software update will do, but Apple is confident it will alleviate the French agency’s concerns and accommodate testing methods used in France. Unlike other countries, in France, ANFR not only performs SAR tests for the head and body, but also SAR tests for the limbs, such as when holding a phone in the hand. It was these limb tests that the iPhone 12 failed.
In a statement, Apple said:
We will release a software update for users in France to adapt to the protocol used by French regulators. We look forward to the iPhone 12 continuing to be available in France. This is linked to a specific testing protocol used by French regulators and not to a security issue.
Officials in Belgium, Germany, and Italy have asked Apple to release this update across the EU, so that’s likely what will happen. The French government said the iPhone 12 will be quickly retested after the update is released, and if it is found to meet the legal SAR limits, sales will resume immediately.