Samsung Halts Shipping Of Replacement Galaxy Note 7s
Samsung has stopped production of the Galaxy Note 7 in cooperation with safety regulators from South Korea, China and the US. Samsung said it is “temporarily adjusting” the production schedule to ensure a safer phone. There has been no word on how long the adjustment would take.
The Note 7 launched in mid-August as one of the best-reviewed Android phones ever made. However, a battery issue with the devices quickly became an unprecedented nightmare for Samsung. The battery problems caused some units to overheat and catch fire.
Samsung issued a global recall of the devices last month. Samsung attributed the overheating batteries to manufacturing issues at one of its suppliers. The company said last month that it stopped using batteries from that supplier. The company has said that more than half of the recalled phones have been returned.
The company worked quickly to get safe replacement units to owners of the phone, but it may have moved too quickly. Many people had chosen to trade their old Note 7 in for a new one that was supposed to be free of the previous issues. But now, there have been a handful of reports of overheating in replacement devices.
One caused the evacuation of a Southwest Airlines flight after it caught fire just before takeoff last week. A teenaged girl was injured by another that heated up and then melted in her hand, leaving minor burns. A third report involved a Kentucky man that awoke in the middle of the night to find his replacement Note 7 on fire and smoke filling his bedroom. The man is now seeking legal help.
After the reports emerged, the technology giant told consumers to power down and stop using the Galaxy Note 7. The company said in a statement, “We are working diligently with authorities and third party experts and will share findings when we have completed the investigation.” Verizon, Sprint, AT&T and T-Mobile have announced they are no longer selling the Note 7 and are letting customers exchange their device for a different phone entirely.
Two major recalls of a single device could hurt the company’s credibility with consumers for a long time. The incidents will deal a severe blow to Samsung’s finances as consumers switch to their competitors. There are plenty of excellent phones on the market, and a few more slated to arrive within a couple of weeks, so consumers have plenty of choices available.