A Taiwan newspaper is carrying the story of how a 26-year old woman was almost burned by her replacement Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smoking away in her pocket. At the time, Ms Lai, 26, was walking her dog late at night after eleven. She was carrying an umbrella in one hand and the dog in the other with the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 tucked into her right rear jeans pocket. However, under three minutes into the walk Miss Lai heard a bang followed by an unnaturally warm sensation from her rear pocket. She noticed her Galaxy Note 7 was producing white smoke. She retrieved the ‘phone from her pocket, threw it onto the ground and waited almost a minute for the device to stop smoking before picking the Galaxy Note 7 up, placing it into the case and taking it to her workplace. Ms Lai had originally bought the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 back in August 2016 but replaced it just ten days ago.
Samsung Taiwan have issued a statement explaining they are trying to contact Ms Lai with a view to have the device returned to understand why the Galaxy Note 7 almost caught fire. The company explained that it could not confirm if the device was a replacement at this time. However, Ms Lai showed the source newspaper the box, which appears to be from a replacement device rather than the original although we should wait for the official confirmation from Samsung. Meanwhile, Ms Lai angrily expressed her frustration, “Might as well not get a new phone!” This incident follows just a few days after a Samsung Galaxy Note 7, also said to be a replacement model, started smoking onboard a Southwest Airlines flight over the United States. This incident caused the airline to evacuate the aircraft, which given how dangerous lithium batteries can be, is very sensible!
At the moment it’s unclear if the replacement Galaxy Note 7 handsets have a similar problem to the original devices, if this is a different issue or if the handset said to be replacement ‘phones are still the original devices. One thing is clear, however: Samsung need to establish and resolve the issue with the Galaxy Note 7 as quickly as possible before consumer confidence is irreversibly damaged for the Galaxy Note 7 handset and, perhaps, the rest of Samsung’s smartphones. Ms Lai explained that whilst she has preferred Android and Samsung devices, she wants a refund and will buy a different model – perhaps even an Apple iPhone. Meanwhile, the Taiwan Consumers’ Foundation has urged Samsung to suspend all sales and replacements of the Galaxy Note 7 because to continue would be “sending bombs to consumers.”