We've confirmed that the power-on issue is caused by a small IC on the board. Here's the analysis that was provided to me:
1. Not all ICs have this issue. About 15% of units are affected based on chip batch inventory records.
2. The ICs that does exhibit this issue will exhibit it consistently. To clarify: the ICs that exhibit this problem will manifest the turn-on problem even when new, the problem may not occur every time the product is turned on, but the problem will occur frequently. In other words, the problem will not develop over time. This gives us confidence that existing units that do not have this issue are not manufactured with an affected IC. The problem will also not worsen over time.
3. This problem cannot be corrected via bootcode or firmware update.
Here are our plans:
We've already been preparing for this to be a hardware issue, so the next manufacturing run of the players will be available in about 30 days. All affected players will receive a free exchange with one of the new players. When the replacement players are available, we will announce it here, and here are what we will do for the exchange:
1. The standard 1 year warranty of the player remains in effect, and warranty against the power-on issue will be extended to 2 years. Even though affected players will manifest the problem when new, we want to assure customers who are worried about their players developing the problem later on.
2. For any EP950 exhibiting the turn-on problem, we will provide a free exchange. The product fits into a USPS priority mail medium flat rate box, and we can either provide a pre-paid shipping lable, or provide the customer with a free Monoprice WiFi dongle as compensation.
3. Exchanges will take approximately 5-7 days to process once received by us.
Micca Support Specialist