Apple Releases SMC Firmware Update 1.3 for 13″ MacBook

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Date: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009, 08:29
Category: MacBook

Late Tuesday, Apple released its SMC Firmware Update 1.3 for the company’s 13″ polycarbonate (black and white non-unibody) MacBook notebooks released in early 2009. The update, a 557 kilobyte download, works to clear a performance issue wherein the notebook may slow down when booted while using battery power only. This SMC Update improves startup time when starting up from the battery.
The update requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later to install and run.
If you’ve tried the update and noticed any changes, please let us know in the comments or forums.


Apple Posts Knowledge Base Articles to Help Access RAM/Hard Drive/Battery for Unibody MacBooks

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Date: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009, 13:41
Category: How-To

Recently, Apple posted updated Knowledge Base documents referencing how to access the batteries, hard drive and RAM on the new unibody MacBook and MacBook Pro notebooks.
While the 13″ and 15″ computers come with a hatch that provides easy access (at least to the hard drive and battery), the 17″ computers do not have a hatch and many users have complained about the accessibility for user-serviceable hard drives, as well as RAM upgrades for the whole product line.
Per MacFixIt, Apple’s reasoning for removing the access hatch makes sense from a battery engineering standpoint, but it does limit users from otherwise relatively simple repairs, upgrades, and troubleshooting. Despite not having a hatch, the 17″ macbook is still accessible. Users will have to remove the bottom case of the computer, and will need a #0 philips screwdriver.
The Knowledge Base documents can be located at the following links:
17″ MacBook Hard Drive (and RAM) (note that the RAM installation instructions are inscribed on the inside hatch).
15″ MacBook Hard Drive (and RAM).
For users interested in upgrading the RAM on the new 15″ MacBook Pro, the following video guide functions as a very thorough demonstration on how to upgrade the RAM:—Bleeding-Edge-TV-297–71649299
If you’ve upgraded your unibody MacBook or MacBook Pro and have any tips to offer, let us know in the comments or forums.


Another Bulging MacBook Pro Battery

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, September 5th, 2007, 00:27
Category: battery

Here’s another picture of a bulged MacBook Pro battery from PowerPage reader “Abe.”


I called Apple on Monday and got a replacement with a pre-paid airbill for the return today. Zero problem with them on the phone. Once I told them what had happened he did not even ask any questions. Said a new one is on the way. That makes me think there have been many and that they’d rather keep it quiet. Anyway, these pics on the old and the replacement should give you an idea of how much it expanded. It measures more and a quarter of an inch of expansion right in the middle.

Three more pics after the jump…


Getting The Most Out of Your Laptop Battery

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Date: Monday, February 12th, 2007, 09:06
Category: battery

Anyone who has purchased an Apple laptop knows that the battery life is significant. I specifically remember getting four hours of life (full screen brightness) with my first G4 Powerbook. As time advances, the battery, processor, and electronic technology grows; and with it comes the ability to produce a portable that is more efficient and energy conservative, yet still has the performance that consumers require.

As time with your laptop advances however, the battery on your system may begin to lose its charging capabilities. What was once four hours of life, turns into three and a half, then to two and a half, and so on and so on. Throughout your system life, the greater portion of the time you will never use your laptop until the battery is empty. More or less you will use it for a little, then plug it back in, take it off, plug in again and so forth. The process of doing this can miss-calibrate the battery to the point where it will not allow maximum storage capability and lower your battery life.

Getting The Most Out Of Your Laptop Battery – Macinhack

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MiniBatteryLoger 1.4.4

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Date: Monday, October 23rd, 2006, 08:00
Category: battery


MiniBatteryLogger monitors your laptop’s battery. It traces the graph
of charge and amperage over time, compares your battery with other
users, logs relevant power events and alerts you with Growl

The Battery Inspector tells you all the details about your battery:
charge, capacity (actual, maximum and original), amperage, voltage,
cycle count. It also reports the estimated times to empty and to full

MiniBatteryLoger 1.4.4


The Apple Core: Sony recalls notebook batteries

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Date: Thursday, October 5th, 2006, 12:25
Category: The Apple Core

apple-battery-250.jpgCNet’s Candace Lombardi reports that Sony is planning to announce a massive battery recall. Sony manufactures the rechargeable Lithium Ion batteries cells found in almost every major notebook computer sold today.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC):
The recall will encompass all possibly defective batteries, including those previously announced by manufacturers for specific notebook computers.
Read the rest of the story on my ZDNet Blog: The Apple Core.


Toshiba Recalls 830,000 Sony Notebook Batteries

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Date: Tuesday, September 19th, 2006, 23:47
Category: battery

Toshiba said Tuesday it would replace about 340,000 laptop computer batteries made by Sony, the latest in a string of Sony battery woes.

The batteries, used in Dynabook and Dynabook Satellite laptops manufactured between March and May this year, could fail on the road because of problems with storing and transmitting power, Toshiba spokesman Keisuke Ohmori said.

Ohmori declined to estimate the cost of the move, saying it would not affect earnings, and would not say whether Toshiba was asking Sony to foot the bill.

Toshiba recalls 340,000 Sony laptop batteries | Tech News on ZDNet

UPDATED 2006-1004:

The actual number of batteries recalled has increased to 830,000 according to ZDNet.


Panasonic Recalls 6,000 Notebook Batteries

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Date: Wednesday, September 6th, 2006, 08:00
Category: battery

Matsushita, better-known by its Panasonic brand name, joined the party this week with its own recall of 6,000 notebook batteries sold in Japan. This most recent recall isn’t nearly as large as the ones that involved 4.1 million batteries sold by Dell and 1.8 million batteries sold by Apple, but it’s another example of the care and attention being paid to notebook batteries these days.

Of course, it’s not just notebook batteries that are causing problems. In June, Hewlett-Packard announced a recall of about 679,000 digital cameras that could catch fire if the cameras tried to apply a charge to a nonrechargable battery. Cell phone makers have dealt with problems from batteries for years, including several reported incidents of exploding phones. With scary footage of flaming notebooks on the evening news and the Internet, many notebook users want to know if their system could be at risk. Here’s a list of who has recalled batteries so far, and where to turn for information.

Panasonic joins notebook battery recall | CNET


The Apple Core: Anatomy of an Apple battery

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Date: Tuesday, September 5th, 2006, 08:00
Category: The Apple Core

Apple Sony iBook BatteryEver wonder what’s inside your Apple battery pack? It turns out that they’re not that complicated inside, but it’s amazing how much power these little cluster of cells can hold.
I took an iBook G3 (dual USB) battery apart on the advice of Coconut Battery which told me that after 496 load cycles, this battery had seen better days.
As you can see in this screen shot, the battery had 14 mAh Battery Capacity left compared to an Original Battery Capacity of 4000 mAh. In addition to lacking capacity the battery pack wasn’t charging.
Time to take it apart!
Click through for a photo dissection of an Apple battery pack on The Apple Core.


Exploding Battery Panic!

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Date: Tuesday, August 29th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Opinion

Dell and Apple recently announced recalls of 5 million Sony laptop batteries. The recall was prompted by safety issues caused by batteries melting, and in some cases, even catching on fire. While the incidents aren’t widespread, the very real danger posed by laptop batteries unpredictably catching on fire has consumers worried.
Here’s a look at the problem, how batteries work, and steps you can take to maximize your safety.
Read More…
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RoughlyDrafted Magazine