After 35 Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphones were reported to have overheated, Samsung moved quickly and issued a recall of all the phones sold and offered a replacement. However, on October 10th, Samsung decided to recall even the replacement phones as several of those phones also began to catch fire. The massive recall will cost approximately $2.3 billion in lost profit.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there have been 96 reports of phones overheating, including 47 reports of property damage and 13 reports of burns.
As an incentive to retrieve the dangerous phones, Samsung has offered customers who return their Galaxy Note 7 a $100 credit. The Galaxy Note 7 was supposed to challenge the iPhone for cell phone supremacy this holiday season. However, from the beginning customers were noticing the batteries were overheating and catching fire.
The problem lies with the battery.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 uses a lithium ion battery. The liquid inside a lithium ion battery is highly flammable. If the material separating the positive and negative sections of the battery is punctured, the battery can short-circuit as electricity rushes across the damaged section. The liquid around the damaged area where electricity is flowing heats up and can explode if it heats up quickly enough.
Samsung believes that a manufacturing error caused the batteries to be pressed too hard.
“The defect was revealed when several contributing factors happened simultaneously, which included sub-optimized assembly process that created variations of tension and exposed electrodes due to insufficient insulation tape,” a Samsung representative told CNET.
Samsung is not the only phone manufacturer to have issues with exploding batteries. Nokia recalled 46 million batteries in 2009 and several iPhone users suffered severe burns in 2015 and 2016.
If you currently own a Galaxy Note 7, you should shut the phone down and return it immediately. While the manufacturing defect affects only .01% of all the phones manufactured, you should not risk your health or property. The phones have proven to be dangerous.
If you have been injured by a defective phone, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney to review your case.