The death of Ma Ailun, a Chinese woman who was killed by electric shock when she answered a call on her plugged-in iPhone, may have been caused by a knock-off battery charger, the state-run media reported today after the news went viral earlier this week.
Knockoff iPhone chargers are commonly used around the world, but may be poorly designed compared to Apple’s own products, largely due to manufacturers cutting corners to save time and money. In an interview on CCTV, telecommunications expert Xiang Ligang also suggested that Ma may have been using a charger intended for another region with different voltage, such as Hong Kong, Taiwan or Japan.
The 23-year-old flight attendant was killed on July 11 in her home in Xinjiang, a region located in Northwest China. Early reports claimed Ma was killed after answering an iPhone 5, but a media investigation revealed that it was in fact the iPhone 4. A police investigation into the incident is currently underway, while Apple has released a statement expressing its condolences and promising to look into the matter as well.