Normally electronics devices are covered with warranty to protect the usability of the device under certain period. The warranty generally covers manufacturing defect only and consumers are responsible not to misuse it under any condition. However, sometimes it is hard to determine if a device has been abused and in order to reduce the argument, manufacturers are trying many methods to detect if a particular product has been abused before the failure occurred. Just recently, Apple Inc has filed a patent with innovative idea on how to detect consumer abuse events when using the products electronically.
The new idea is looking into ways of implementing multiple sensors into system device that can detect if a device has been exposed under extreme environment such as hot, cold, moisture, vibration, mechanical drop and etc. All these abuse events will be logged into the system memory and can be retrieved by warranty service center to further examine if it should be covered under warranty or not. This is definitely far more efficient than the conventional sticker tampering or the physical inspection by untrained personnel that often replace the new devices unnecessarily, causing additional cost to the manufacturers.
Although the idea is still in paper now, but we should expect some kind of development efforts being spent to further look into how to make it more effective, without incurring extra overhead on the device BOM (Bill of Material) cost. Apparently, it may not bring any benefit to consumers due to the additional implementation cost as well as the intelligent consumer abuse event detection but nevertheless, it will be most welcomed by all the manufacturers in the industries.