Sony Computer Entertainment has announced a global recall of certain AC adaptors supplied with the black slimline PlayStation after ascertaining that they may overheat and cause injury.
The company has blamed a subcontractor for supplying a component to the AC Adaptor manufacturer that was vulnerable to overheating — so much so that in severe cases, reported in North America, the AC Adaptor actually melted.
Sony Europe says it knows of four cases in its territories of Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Oceania and described the incidents as minor with no severe consequences. The recall is a "precautionary measure", it said.
The AC adaptors in question were manufactured between August and December of 2004 and supplied with PS2 models SCPH70002, 70003 and 70004. Sony has launched a special website, www.ps2ac.com to help you check whether yours needs replacing. You can find details of numbers to call on the same site and they will also be published in national newspapers tomorrow.
Replacements will be made available free of charge, and Sony advises anybody with an affected unit to avoid using it again until it's replaced. The replacement will arrive with a prepaid postage label so that you can send it back to Sony to be disposed of.
Sony has declined to comment on how much the recall is likely to cost, although all those prepaid packages and replacement AC Adaptors aren't likely to come cheap. Sony may have had trouble supplying PS2s to retailers during the run-up to Christmas last year, but it wasn't because it manufactured less units; they simply took longer to make to market.
It's not the first problem of its sort we've encountered this year, either. In February Microsoft announced that it was voluntarily replacing 14.1 million Xbox power cables after a similar fault was uncovered.