Assault on Batteries

{"The "," tells me that a law firm in San Francisco is considering a class action lawsuit against Apple over the longevity of the iPod's lithium-ion batteries. It seems that these batteries (like other batteries of their ilk) eventually give up the ghost after being recharged several hundred times.

As it's a little difficult to effectively roll one's eyes on a webpage without invoking the worst sort of smiley, I'll pass on the editorial and offer this advice:

If your iPod's battery has lost its poop, you have ways other than joining what will likely be a fruitless lawsuit to address the problem.

The least expensive option is to replace the battery yourself. There are a couple of outfits -- "," and "," -- that offer replacement batteries. PDASmart sells batteries for only the first two generations of iPods at $59 a pop (for $69, PDASmart will replace the battery for you). Laptops-For-Less sells batteries for all three iPod generations for $49 each (sold on a do-it-yourself-and-godspeed basis only). Both companies include instructions for opening the iPod as well as the implements necessary to do the job.

I might mention that it's not terribly difficult to open a first- or second-generation iPod. Cracking the current third-generation iPod, though, is about as easy as extracting your own kidney. There's a very real danger that you'll break your little digital buddy in the process (yup, I've done it).

If you have such a 3G iPod, you may instead wish to have Apple replace the battery. Recently the company began offering a battery replacement service for $99 (plus shipping and sales tax). When Apple replaces the battery it returns to you a "functionally equivalent" iPod. That means that you won't get back the same iPod that you sent in. It will be the same model but not the one that you once clasped to your bosom.

Fear not, those of you with engraved iPods. In the case of personalized iPods (and no, an iPod that you've personally etched with a knitting needle to read "Metallica Rules!" doesn't count), Apple will remove the back plate and put it on the iPod it returns to you.

For more details on Apple's battery replacement service, go ","

And to learn more about the care and feeding of lithium-ion batteries, travel "}

  
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