Samsung scraps flagship Galaxy Note7 due to fire hazard
Image credit: Reuters
Samsung has discontinued production and sales of its flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone after it failed to resolve problems with the devices spontaneously catching fire.
Samsung announced the decision in a statement only a few days after reports emerged that replacement devices with new safer batteries had also suffered from the problem. It was the smartphone’s batteries that were originally thought to be the culprit. However, the fact that the problem continued despite the replacement devices being fitted with completely new batteries from a different supplier pointed to the fact that a deeper engineering problem must exist within the device’s system.
“We can confirm the report that Samsung permanently discontinues the production of Galaxy Note7,” Samsung said in a statement.
Samsung originally recalled 2.5 million gadgets in early September this year.
The decision goes even further than yesterday’s speculations of Samsung temporarily suspending the phone’s production but is in line with recommendations of industry analysts who said Samsung needs to say goodbye to the Note7 in order to save face and maintain customer trust.
The South Korean electronics giant previously advised retailers to stop selling Galaxy Note7s and even delayed distribution of replacement devices in the UK following reports of those also being prone to explosions.
At least five incidents of self-ignition were reported in the replacement gadgets.
“As a result of making a complete mess of the Galaxy Note7 recall, Samsung is more likely to lose a large number of high-end users to other Android handsets rather than to Apple,” said Richard Windsor, from Edison Investment Research.
“The real issue is brand and reputation. As long as Samsung carried out the recall smoothly and kept users very happy, the issue would eventually blow over. Unfortunately, this is very far from the case, and the fact that Samsung appeared to still be shipping defective devices could trigger a large loss of faith in Samsung products.”
Analysts are already suggesting the recall and now scrapping of the Note7 could cost Samsung in the long run, particularly coming just as rivals including Google and Apple have announced new high-end smartphones.