Apple’s limited warranty doesn’t cover damage caused by liquids, even for water-resistant products like the iPhone, Apple Watch, and some AirPods models. Because of this, Apple has different methods to detect if the device has been exposed to liquids. And on the latest Macs, Apple now has a way of knowing if liquids have been detected in the USB-C ports.
Macs can now detect liquids in USB-C ports
As noted by 9to5Mac, macOS Sonoma 14.1 includes a new system daemon named “liquiddetectiond,” which, as the name suggests, can identify when the computer has been exposed to liquids. More specifically, this daemon runs in the background to collect liquid detection analysis from each USB-C port on the Mac.
This daemon is described as a “Liquid Detection and Corrosion Mitigation Daemon.” iPhones and iPads have a similar daemon, which is used to alert users when liquid is detected in the connector so that they immediately unplug the charging cable to prevent damage.
On the Mac, however, the code suggests that the daemon is only used for “analytics” and is not associated with end-user features. While Apple may eventually implement an alert similar to the one that already exists in iOS, it seems more likely that the data collected by this daemon will be used for technicians to determine whether a Mac is eligible for free repair.
Of course, that’s just one more way for Apple to know if the Mac has been exposed to liquids. As Apple’s website describes, “Mac laptop computers and some Apple wired and wireless keyboards have Liquid Contact Indicators (LCI) to help determine if these products have been exposed to liquid.”
These indicators are strategically placed inside the devices and change color when they come into contact with liquids. Putting a digital liquid detector on USB-C ports is just another way to ensure that technicians are right about claiming that a Mac has been exposed to liquids.
It’s unclear at this point whether the new daemon works with any Macs running the latest version of macOS or only with M3 Macs due to some extra hardware requirement.
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