4chan pranksters try to trick users into microwaving iPhones with iOS 8

22 Sep 2014

Purported image of an iPhone microwaved when testing Apple Wave

A fake Apple promo being shared on social media claims that iPhone users can charge their phones in the microwave – which, of course, they can’t.

That qualification probably seems unnecessary, but you can never be too careful.

The fake promo has been styled to look like an official Apple announcement and claims that iOS 8 comes with a new feature called Wave, which enables the device to charge wirelessly through microwave frequencies.

This then translates into instructing iPhone users to microwave their phones.

There are plenty of signs to indicate that Apple Wave is a falsehood. The design of the promo isn’t quite as slick as Apple’s genuine marketing materials. The introductory text uses Samsung’s advertising tagline, ‘the next big thing’. Also, the instructions on how many seconds of microwaving are required are inconsistent.

Of course, the glaring red flag that this hoax raises is the claim that microwaving an iPhone would be a good idea.

The spoof promo seems to have originated on the 4chan message boards, and has been shared eagerly on social media with some posters claiming to have successfully used this new technology. However, with a cursory glance at the posts from those who say they have fallen victim to the prank you’ll notice the same photo of a blitzed iPhone doing the rounds.

This isn’t the first time 4chan pranksters have tried to trick iPhone users into destroying their phones. A similar hoax claimed that iOS 7 could make your iPhone waterproof.

However, evidence of anyone actually falling for it (as opposed to making the claim so that the stunt grabs more attention), is thin on the ground.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.