Where Have All the Replacement Laptop Batteries Gone?

dellbattery2.jpgA fire that broke out at the South Korean LG Chem plant on March 3rd could end up keeping lots of laptops plugged into the wall. The top battery maker says that production at its biggest battery plant in Seoul has had to halt operations due to the damages. Reuters reports that LG Chem still cannot determine when battery production will resume. A few weeks back, Jerry Shen of Asus told us that this fire would have direct problems for the availability of Eee PCs. And now Dell and HP are feeling the brunt of battery shortage. Apparently there isn’t only a shortage of replacement and extended batteries at Dell, but the prices are going up as well. “We sell battery packs. The prices of those battery packs for people ordering extra batteries have gone up,” a Dell spokesman told Reuters. When we tried to purchase a nine-cell lithium-ion battery replacement for the Dell XPS M1530, it came up as shipping in 1 to 2 weeks—at a price of $300. HP is facing the same issues, though its replacement batteries seem to be shipping within 1 to 2 days and the company has made no formal statement about jacking up the prices.

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  1. Ringo Says:

    I’ll believe it when I see it. How hard is it to make a simple battery? Is it so hard that only LG can build one? Can’t anyone else make the stupid batteries? Seems harder to manufacture a battery than a laptop nowadays. What does that mean about the quality of the laptops nowadays? Soon the batteries will cost more that the laptops themselves… this is such a joke. I made a battery in my physics class a few years ago… let me go and fetch it.

  2. Petya357 Says:

    Ringo, I happened to work for a top battery maker a couple of years ago. Yes, it IS harder, in fact MUCH HARDER to manufacture a Li-Ion battery cell than a laptop. Laptop production is a simple electromechanical assembly, and some hard-drive burning – dozens and dozens of companies do it. Li-ion battery production needs an approx. 20M USD hi-tech production line, and know-how – there are only about 5 makes in the world who can deliver consistent quality suitable for the reputable laptop OEMs. A fire in the largest factory is a big deal, trust me…

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