A 15-year-old Belgium boy is allegedly the latest victim in a series of mysterious iPhone explosions that have captured the attention of France's and the European Commissions' consumer affair watchdogs.

Belgian website De Redactie today related the case of one Salvatore from Liege who claimed his iPhone exploded in his hand as he was making a call.

Happily, the explosion happened inside [the phone], he said.

The phone's display was left completely black, Salvatore said. The incident didn't cause any serious injuries but reportedly gave Salvatore a headache for a couple of days. He has been promised a free replacement unit by Apple but hasn't yet received a new phone.

There have earlier been numerous reports of exploding iPhone devices in the United States, United Kingdom and France, with most recently about ten cases having emerged in France where the official competition, consumer affairs and fraud watchdog DGCCRF has now launched an investigation to find out whether the popular Apple smartphone could pose a threat to consumers.

Apple claims today that iPhones turned in by customers in France and elsewhere in Europe with shattered screens showed external pressure that would have caused the cracking.

As of today, there has been no confirmed incident linked to battery overheating in the iPhone 3GS, and the number of cases we are investigating amounts to less than a dozen, the US technology giant, which has sold 26 million iPhones and 200 million iPods to date, said in the statement today. The iPhones with broken screens that we have been able to analyse so far show, in all cases, that the cracks were caused by an external pressure upon the iPhone.

Earlier this month, Apple reportedly informed the European Commission that it regards all reported iPhone explosion cases as isolated incidents and have no evidence of a general problem.

The European Commission, which has stated that Apple has been very cooperative, has asked all 27 EU nations to keep it informed of any problems under the community's rapid alert system for dangerous consumer products, known as RAPEX.