This evening, we’re seeing reports that, as soon as tomorrow, Samsung might recall the Galaxy Note7, and not just in Australia, but worldwide.
We’ve seen in the last couple of days reports of Samsung Galaxy Note7’s catching fire while charging, perhaps due to questionable third-party USB-C cables, which has seen Samsung halt further shipments of the phone internationally. That alone is a fairly major step, but it’s gone further, with Samsung already announcing a recall in its home country of South Korea (as reported by ZDNet). Tomorrow, the tip is, that recall will be extended worldwide.
— TechnoBuffalo (@TechnoBuffalo) August 25, 2016
Australian tech site Gizmodo has reportedly spoken to a source with knowledge of the situation (and I guess it’s implied that this person is within Samsung, or very close to the brand), and here’s what they’re saying:
- An announcement is to be made Friday morning Australian time, if the recall proceeds.
- Any recall may be coordinated within Australia by Samsung locally, working together with its retail and telco partners.
We’ve reached out to Samsung Australia for comment, but at the late hour, we’re not expecting to get much ahead of whatever happens tomorrow. Samsung did confirm to Gizmodo, though, that “shipments of Galaxy Note 7 are being temporarily delayed for additional quality assurance inspections”, which is what they’ve told other outlets as well. This news, with the recall already underway in South Korea, certainly points more in one direction than another.
A global recall for the Note7 could be little short of a disaster for Samsung, which has already suffered through an embarrassing recall process over the last few years involving washing machines that could, in certain circumstances, catch fire. The timing is equally depressing, with Apple poised to announce a new iPhone 7 in a few days (not tomorrow as earlier reported), which will come in (at least) two sizes, and there’s expected to even be a direct competitor to Samsung’s Note7 in the form of an iPhone Pro including a stylus.
Both Duncan and I are quite impressed with Samsung’s Note7, and we’d be as disappointed as Samsung will be if a global recall in fact goes ahead. However, Samsung can’t afford not being careful here; things that catch fire are really bad press, and the last thing any of us wants to see is someone hurt or injured because of their phone.