- Associated Press - Saturday, August 7, 2010

TOKYO (AP) - After prodding from the Japanese government, Apple Inc. will post prominent notices on its website warning some iPod Nano music players in Japan may overheat.

Sixty-one cases of batteries overheating have been reported in first-generation iPod Nano machines sold in 2005 and 2006, according to Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

Some units were warped by the heat that caused minor burns when people touched them, but no serious injuries or damage have been reported, it said.

A notice for a battery replacement was posted late last year on Apple Japan’s website but it requires several clicks before it can be read.

The government, in talks with Apple Japan since last year, pressed the company to correct that, ministry official Seiji Shimagami said Friday.

Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr said an easily accessible web page will be set up by early next week that outlines how to get a battery replacement.

Apple will also send e-mails to registered owners, he said in a telephone interview from California. “Safety is the highest priority for Apple,” said Neumayr.

Japanese are among the world’s biggest fans of Apple products, standing in long lines to snatch up iPhone models and the iPad as soon as they go on sale.

The ministry said 1.8 million first-generation iPod Nano players have been sold in Japan, but it is unclear how many of those have the problem battery.

Neumayr declined to comment on whether Nano players in other parts of the world may be affected by the same problem.

Last month, Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs offered free protective cases to buyers of the iPhone 4 to prevent reception problems that occur when people cover a certain spot on the phone with a bare hand.