Sony has announced it is voluntarily recalling some 535,000 Vaio laptops worldwide due to a temperature-control defect that may cause excessive buildup of heat and in some cases distort the shape of the laptop. Apparently, a bug in the BIOS software is to blame. The extensive recall affects both F- and C-Series Vaio laptops sold since January 2010, including 259,000 laptops sold in the U.S., 103,000 in Europe, 120,000 in Asia, and 52,000 in Japan.
The company claims it has recorded 39 cases of overheating and noted the possibility that the faulty laptops could cause skin burns, even though no such cases have been reported so far. To identify whether your Vaio is part of the affected series, head over to Sony's diagnostic page and enter the serial number found on the bar-coded sticker on the bottom of your machine. Affected users can fix the problem by downloading a program through their Vaio's update system or the company's website. Alternatively, Sony is also offering to pick up the laptop and handle the repair work for you.
This isn't the first time Sony has issued a recall for overheating issues. The electronics company recalled 9.6 million laptop batteries in 2006 because overheating cells were a fire risk. This was one of the biggest recalls in consumer electronics history, and drained around 51.2 billion yen ($577 million) from the company's earnings.