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Chronicling the life of the Samsung Galaxy Note7

By Cookie Monster & Vijay Anand - 23 Jan 2017

A look at the journey of the Samsung Galaxy Note7 (Part II)


The Big Recall and Exchange 

  • 6 September: Replacement program estimated to cost US$1 billion

Quoting estimates from Credit Suisse Group AG, Daishin Securities Co. and Pelham Smithers Associates, Bloomberg claimed in its news report that Samsung could spend as much as US$1 billion for the recall or replacement program. Koh Dong Jin, the head of the mobile business at Samsung, reportedly described the financial impact as "heartbreaking". 

  • 6 September: Interim phones made available for Galaxy Note7 users

While Samsung Mobile Singapore worked out the details for a local exchange program, it confirmed that Galaxy Note7 users could borrow a replacement phone to tide them over the interim period. 

  • 6 September: Announcement of a local exchange programe

Samsung announced a local exchange program where customers could exchange their device anytime from 16th September to 2nd October via in-person at Suntec Convention & Exhibition Centre or free home delivery. 

  • 7 September: Samsung sheds light on what went wrong

Samsung shared some technical details on what caused the battery of the Galaxy Note7 to overheat and explode. 


Attack of the Fires 

  • 9 September: Jeep set on fire by an exploding Galaxy Note7

One of the more serious incidents occurred in St. Petersburg where an exploding Galaxy Note7 set a jeep on fire. The driver left the device charging in the jeep while he was unloading furniture. 

Screenshot taken from video at FOX 13.

  • 9 September: FAA and CPSC issued advisories

The Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) and the U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued advisories to consumers to stop using the Galaxy Note7. Passengers were not allowed to turn on or charge the devices in planes while CPSC urged customers to power down their devices.

(Image source: Reddit)

  • 10 September: Samsung Mobile Singapore issued advisory

In a Facebook post, Samsung Mobile Singapore urged customers to power down their devices and exchange them as soon as possible

  • 14 September: Temporary fix to prevent the Galaxy Note7 from exploding

Samsung will be rolling out a software update to the Galaxy Note7 which will limit the maximum charge capacity so as to minimize the risk of the battery exploding. 

  • 14 September: More than 70 cases reported in the U.S.

The Canadian government revealed that there had been more than 70 incidents of the Galaxy Note7 catching fire in the U.S. alone. It initiated a recall of the device with Samsung. 

  • 16 September: Another car caught fire after a Galaxy Note7 exploded

The Daily Mail reported that a car was engulfed in flames in Florida after a Galaxy Note7 exploded in the passenger seat while being charged. 

  • 18 September: The first lawsuit against Samsung by a Galaxy Note7 user

CNBC claimed that a Florida man filed a lawsuit against Samsung after his Galaxy Note7 exploded in his pocket and left him with severe burns on his leg. U.S regulators added that there were over 92 incidents. 

  • 19 September: Samsung rushed the launch of the Galaxy Note7 to beat Apple?

Based on information from "people familiar with the matter", Bloomberg made a bold claim that the top executives at Samsung decided to speed up the launch of the Galaxy Note7 after they heard that Apple’s iPhone 7 would look just like the iPhone 6/6s. This could have led to increased pressure to deliver and resulted in the battery defects. 

  • 22 September: Samsung could face a "trust crisis" in China

Forbes revealed that Galaxy Note7 users in China were not satisfied with Samsung's handling of the situation. While Samsung rolled out exchange or recall programs in other global markets, nothing was done in China. Canalys research director Nicole Peng stated that this could push Samsung towards a "trust crisis" where consumers have doubts about the Samsung brand. 

  • 25 September: Replaced Galaxy Note7 units overheating or losing charge too quickly

Reports surfaced in South Korea that replacement units were overheating or losing charge even when being charged. While Samsung acknowledged this feedback, it insisted that these were "isolated incidents". 

A small number of customers in Singapore also faced similar issues which Samsung Mobile Singapore described as "not widespread". 

  • 26 September: Consumer confidence in Samsung affected

According to an online survey done by Branding Brand, 34% of existing customers stated that they will not buy another Samsung smartphone following the Galaxy Note7 recall. 

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