Samsung appears to be having issues with its Galaxy Note 7
Over the past few days, after you get past the hype of the latest Apple Event announcing Apple Watch 2 and iPhone 7, you KNOW there have to be executives at Samsung that are – at least for once – glad that Apple has all the limelight. The latest news out of Cupertino has, no doubt had them thanking everyone for moving on from the latest news out of Seoul: Exploding Galaxy Note 7’s.
Last week, stories of exploding batteries have been all over the news. It got so bad that Samsung indicated that they were not only going to halt sales of their flagship phablet, but recall the device as well. To dates, there have been 35 reported cases of exploding or bursting batteries. News of fires and burns as at least one of the 35 was reported to have exploded in someone’s pants pocket.
Low quality battery cells were reported to be responsible for the issue and recall.
Reports of what countries are effected and are not effected have varied, with at least one report indicating that Note 7 customers in China are unaffected due to the battery supplier used for units there.
Samsung is using lithium-ion batteries in the Note 7. Possible causes for the issue appear to be damaged power cells caused by substandard components, chemistry or design. If a lithium-ion battery is compromised by being over charged, by overheating, damage, or age, the inner cells can “outgas” the flammable, electrolyte mixture within the membrane. An undamaged battery membrane will stretch and bulge to contain this material to some extent; but at some point, the membrane will rupture, and the battery will explode.
Depending on where, when and how violently the battery finally ruptures and explodes, the damage can be devastating.
Samsung has issued a statement informing customers in the United States that they will be able to replace their Note 7s with new units as early as next week.
Customers will be given the option of trading their units in for either a new Note 7 or a Galaxy S7/S7 edge and a refund for the difference. All accessories can also be exchanged for their S7 equivalents.
Samsung is also offering a $25 phone bill credit, or a $25 gift card, for the inconvenience. Device owners can call 1-800-SAMSUNG to arrange a mail exchange, or they can return their device to the retail store where they purchased it.
US mobile carriers are offering the following options to Note 7 owners:
- T-Mobile is letting customers return their Note 7 in any store for a full refund of the purchase price and any accessories you may have bought. You’ll then be given the choice of buying another phone or receiving a new Note 7 when they are put on sale again, if you wish.
- Sprint customers can return their device to any Sprint location and can pick up a comparable loaner to use in the meantime
- Verizon says it has stopped selling the Galaxy Note 7 and has waived the restocking fee for the device through the end of September 2016
- AT&T is working with Samsung to facilitate Note 7 exchanges. They are also allowing customers to return their device for a different smartphone. Refunds for the difference and for accessories purchased directly from them will be offered
- U.S. Cellular has not yet announced its plans for handling the recall, but I am assuming they will provide offers to effected device owners.
Did you buy a Galaxy Note 7? Has the battery on this device given you any cause for concern? Have you returned the device or have you decided to hold on to it and roll the dice? If you traded yours in, will you wait for a new Note 7, or did you opt for a different device? Why don’t you meet me in the Discussion area, below and tell me all about what happened to you?