Apple Initiates Replacement Program for First-Gen iPod nano


Credit: The Consumerist
Credit: The Consumerist

Apple has initiated a replacement program for the first-generation iPod nano due to an overheating issue with the battery inside of the device. The problem was recognized by Apple several years ago and they offered replacements to customers on a case-by-case basis. A number of foreign government agencies in Europe and Asia investigated the defect and last year the Japan trade ministry forced Apple to tell customers about the replacement website on Apple’s Japanese website.

This weekend Apple started sending out emails to customers that purchased the first-generation iPod nano to tell them about the replacement program.

You should have the serial number of your iPod nano available before visiting the site, because the problem does not occur in all iPod nanos. You’ll need to verify that your iPod nano was one of the defective ones using the serial number to verify eligibility. According to Apple:

Apple has determined that, in very rare cases, the battery in the iPod nano (1st generation) may overheat and pose a safety risk. Affected iPod nanos were sold between September 2005 and December 2006,” the company wrote. “This issue has been traced to a single battery supplier that produced batteries with a manufacturing defect. While the possibility of an incident is rare, the likelihood increases as the battery ages.

Apple recommends that you stop using your first-generation iPod nano if it is eligible to be replaced and order a replacement using the provided website. If customers need help obtaining a replacement they can visit an Apple Retail Store or an Apple Authorized Service Provider.  It will take about six weeks for the replacement to arrive.

The reason Apple recommends that customers stop using the first-generation iPod nano is because the longer it has been in use the more likely the overheating issue will occur. Due to the fact that these iPod nanos are about six years old you should probably take this advice and stop using it — immediately.


  • Sinnedin95

    When they say they are part of the replacement program, do they replace it with one of the new nanos or a new battery, or what do they replace it with?

  • Scott Ronan

    I have one somewhere I’ll have to dig it out and see if I can get a replacement.  I would be very surprised it their giving out new ones though.

  • Jo

    Mine was broken about 2 years ago and they just replaced it with a similiar ipod nano first generation. I only started using it about 2 months ago when my other ipod broke. I just filled in the form at apple and I got the message that they’re sending me a box with instructions to send it.. I’m guessing that means my ipod is one of those that needed replacing.. great now how am I going to listen to music? 

  • Charley

    This is why I’m an Apple customer…this and other issues I’ve taken to Apple and they fixed them right away, more often than not at no cost to me.

  • RonBlatto

    My first MacBook had a harddrive crash a month after I bought it.  I took it to the Apple Store and they guy asked if I had run a Time Machine backup.  When I told him I did he handed me a brand new one.  I’ve bought dozens of Apple products (laptops, iPhones, iPods, iMacs) since then and anytime there have been problems (very few) Apple has always just replaced the product no questions asked.

  • _bunny_

    I got the same message, that they’re sending a box. Fingers crossed! I’m really hoping I don’t eventually get a message saying, “sorry, yours wasn’t needing replacing.” 

  • Gulilucont

    You mean… “they’re?” 

  • Len Williams

    I went to the Replacement Program page, entered my original nano’s serial number, clicked the “Continue” button–and nothing happened. I verified the serial number, clicked the “Continue” button–and nada. I wonder if the site is temporarily overwhelmed, but it seems strange that clicking the Continue button doesn’t do anything at all. OK, I did get a little spinning wheel for a second or two, but then no redirect. What to do?

  • ErinsDad

    Just checked my email, sure enough there is an email from Apple Support.  Click the link, enter the serial #, log in to Apple Care, confirm address, done.  5 minutes, including finding a darn magnifying glass to read the serial number.

  • Len Williams

    UPDATE: I tried again a few hours later and got a bit further into the process, but after confirming my Apple ID I got a page telling me that “Safari can’t open the page” because the server wasn’t responding. There may be tons of traffic right now, so I’ll try again later and see how far I get.

    UPDATE 2: Drove to the Apple Store in Tampa and spoke with a store rep who didn’t know anything about the program. He found one that did, then proceeded to go onto Apple’s site, entered my serial number, verified my Apple ID then told me I’d get a box to send in my iPod and told me I’d receive a new one. He didn’t know if it would be a refurbished or new original first gen nano or a new one.

  • Aaron

    Looks like my two iPod Nanos are getting replaced. I have a black 2GB and a white 4GB (engraved) that are still working today.

  • Alex Martins

    Is the replacement a 1st Gen ipod or the current one ? Thanks in advance,

  • Aaron

    It’s for the first-generation iPod NANO released around 6 years ago. Follow the “replacement program” link in the article to see a photograph of the model involved.

  • Aaron

    Heh… if your answer was “no”, he would’ve still handed you a new MacBook but also handed you a box of tissues and sincere condolences for your lost data.  :)

  • henrymaxm

    I would really like to know as well.

  • Meatleg

    Mine exploded a few years ago.  They gave me a new one of the current model at the time (video camera capability) and replaced my keyboard because the soot from the nano fouled it up.

  • Alex Martins

    Sorry, I meant to ask if the replacement apple will sent me will be another 1Gen iPod nano or a current model? This is not clear.

  • Diesalfa

    I actually used my iPhone to take a photo of the serial number and zoomed in to read it. :)

  • Dieslafa

    I would be surprised if the have enough of the old model in stock for the replacement program. My bet is new ones. 

  • Shoesuntied

    You can actually view the serial number on the device itself…  Settings > about. I’m pretty sure it works the same for just about all their devices… just a heads up in case you need to read a serial number again.

  • RonBlatto

    Thanks to the Cloud and Dropbox I’m not as worried about it as I would have been a year ago.