But in a class-action lawsuit against Apple, the plaintiff alleges that all Apple Watches are susceptible to their screens breaking or popping off due to a design defect.

The company has also tacitly acknowledged that there’s an issue with its original and Series 2 Apple Watches, extending repair coverage for three years for original watches whose batteries expanded, as well as a similar program for the Series 2 watches.

“Apple has determined that under certain conditions, some Apple Watch Series 2 devices may not power on or they may experience an expanded battery,” Apple said in an internal document obtained by MacRumors.

The company hasn’t said how many original and Series 2 watches have been affected, and declined to comment for this story whether there was a similar issue with the Series 3 watches, which was released less than a year ago. The watch I witnessed burst and Siegler’s watch above were Series 3s, and from reports on the web and Twitter it seems they’re not alone:

Genius Bar Grove appointment chaos

There was once a time, when Apple primarily still sold computers and iPods, where you could walk into an Apple Store with a defective product under warranty, and the company would often replace it or repair it as soon as possible. For the most part now, partly as a result of the company’s unbridled successes, increases in scale, and a cost-containing mentality, it’s nearly impossible to just walk into an Apple store in a major metropolitan area and grab ahold of a Genius to get something sorted quickly.

As Google Ventures (GV) partner and tech writer M.G. Siegler recently outlined on his blog, you have to schedule appointments in advance, and even then, a Genius will likely not get to you at your allotted time, they’ll fill out a ton of digital paperwork, and then tell you your device will be repaired in two weeks. In Siegler’s case, Apple adjudged him to have been at fault for his broken Apple Watch, which showed up after repairs… still broken.

And when there appear to be legitimate issues with multiple products that Apple has released in recent years, having long wait times or staff who act as if you’re guilty of damaging your devices until proven innocent, isn’t exactly an ideal situation for one of the few companies still succeeding with physical retail stores.

Gasesous iPads and iPhones

Earlier this month, a group of employees at an Apple store in Amsterdam had to be treated for fume inhalation after an iPad started leaking gases into the air. Early reports suggested it had exploded, but it doesn’t seem any fire was involved. A similar incident transpired at a Swiss Apple store in January, when the store had to be evacuated for gases coming from an overheating iPhone battery.

A new Apple?

All of this isn’t to say that there haven’t always been issues along the way. Steve Jobs once told someone to hold their phone differently when their brand-new iPhone 4 wouldn’t make calls; Apple once recalled 1.8 million defective laptop batteries; and the iPhone 5 seemed to have its own swelling-battery problem.

Yes, some of these recent reports are anecdotal complaints amplified by social media. And when you’ve sold as many products as Apple, there are bound to be the occasional quality control blip along the supply chain. But it feels as if something has gone pear-shaped at Apple recently.

Since taking over as CEO in 2011, Tim Cook has only introduced two new product lines—the Apple Watch and HomePod (well, three if you count AirPods). Instead, he mainly chose to expand the variations on existing products, pumping out new sizes, features, and colors each year. This approach has obviously helped make Apple so rich, but it’s difficult to see that this expansion of products has done anything other than make it difficult for Apple’s manufacturers and support staff to retain their focus.

Perhaps this is just an awkward blip in Apple’s long history—but it’s possible that it signals that something deeper may be wrong at the world’s largest company. All may seem well from the outside now, but how long can the company keep expanding from its core—especially with the moves into health care and autonomous cars on the horizon—before more serious flaws emerge?

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