Anatel (National Telecommunications Agency) states that it will determine whether the level of radiation emitted by the iPhone 12 complies with Brazilian standards, after the French surveillance body suspended sales of the device in the European country on Tuesday (12) .
French authorities found specific absorption rates (SAR) above those permitted in Europe in two tests carried out in the last week. The Brazilian agency adopts the same limit determined by European regulations of 2 Watts per kilo, on average. Devices undergo testing before receiving permission for sale.
“The matter arrived yesterday [quarta-feira (13)] to our knowledge. We are meeting with certification bodies and laboratories and organizing market supervision”, states Anatel in a note sent to Sheet.
Apple said, in a note sent to Reuters this Wednesday, that the iPhone 12 has been certified by several international agencies as compatible with global radiation standards. The company disputes the French test results and says the device complies with standards for specific absorption rates, which apply to devices that emit radio frequencies.
Wanted by Sheet via email at 5:35 pm this Thursday (14), the technology giant did not respond until the publication of this text.
The device was launched in 2020 and, according to the manufacturer’s technical documentation, generates emissions in the order of 1 Watt per kilogram. Since then, the device has undergone operating system updates, which may place greater demands on processing chips — which increases the level of emissions.
The iPhone 12 is no longer for sale in Apple’s online stores because its new model, the iPhone 15, was launched this week.
The French agency said that accredited laboratories found the absorption of electromagnetic energy by the body at 5.74 watts per kilogram in tests that simulated using the phone in the hand or in the pants pocket. According to the report, tests showed that the phone complied with so-called SAR standards when it was in a jacket pocket or in a bag.
France’s digital economy secretary, Jean-Noel Barrot, said a software update will be enough to fix radiation problems related to the phone the US company has been selling since 2020.
“The expectation is that Apple will respond within two weeks,” he told Le Parisien newspaper in an interview on Tuesday evening, adding: “If they don’t, I am prepared to order a recall of all iPhone 12 in circulation. The rule is the same for everyone, including digital giants.”
Several European countries, including Belgium, Germany and Italy, are following French regulatory action, raising the chance of more bans.
French authorities notified the European Commission and regulators in other EU member countries about the decision, in accordance with the bloc’s rules. The action put Paris in a leadership role on the issue because its decision will apply, unless there are objections, to other countries.
“At the moment, member states have a three-month period to examine these restrictions,” said Sonya Gospodinova, the commission’s spokeswoman for internal markets. If no member state opposes French actions, the restrictions will apply across the EU, according to the commission.
The Dutch digital regulatory agency is also investigating the case after the release of the French report, according to an authority cited by the newspaper Algemeen Dagblad.
“A standard was exceeded. Fortunately, there is no acute security risk, but very soon we will have a conversation with the company,” Angeline van Dijk, from the Dutch State Inspectorate for Digital Infrastructure, told the Dutch newspaper.
Germany’s network regulator BNetzA said it could initiate similar procedures and was in close contact with French authorities, while Spain’s OCU consumer group urged local authorities to suspend iPhone 12 sales.
Belgium’s technology minister, Mathieu Michel, asked the country’s telecommunications regulator to analyze the danger levels of the iPhone 12.
Smartphones emit low levels of radiation when they are in use, and researchers have spent decades studying their possible health effects. The World Health Organization stated: “To date, no adverse health effects caused by the use of cell phones have been established.”
With Reuters and Financial Times