It was entirely the fault of 7’s batteries, Samsung concludes
SAMSUNG Electronics indicated yesterday that its latest flagship Galaxy S smartphone could be delayed as it pledged to enhance product safety following an investigation into the cause of fires in its premium Note 7 devices.
Wrapping up its monthslong probe into the cause of the Note 7 debacle, the world’s top smartphone maker said faulty batteries from two suppliers were to blame for a product failure that wiped $5.3 billion (R71.86bn) off its operating profit.
Samsung mobile chief Koh Dong-jin said procedures had been put in place to avoid a repeat of the fires, as investors look to the launch of the South Korean tech giant’s first premium handset since the Note 7, the Galaxy S8, some time this year.
“The lessons of this incident are deeply reflected in our culture and process,” Koh told the press. “Samsung Electronics will be working hard to regain consumer trust.”
However, Koh said the Galaxy S8 would not be unveiled at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, which begins on February 27.
Investors have been looking to the investigation into the Note 7 failure to reassure consumers that the company is on top of the problem and can be trusted to fix it. Samsung’s reputation took a hammering after it announced a recall of fire-prone Note 7s, only for reports to emerge that replacement devices also caught fire.
The handset, Samsung’s answer to Apple’s iPhones, was withdrawn from sale in October less than two months after its launch, in one of the biggest tech failures in tech history.
Investigations by internal and independent experts ruled out problems with the Note 7’s hardware and software, Samsung said.
Instead, manufacturing and design defects in Note 7 batteries caused short-circuiting, Koh said.
Samsung Electronics did not name the battery suppliers yesterday, but previously identified them as affiliate Samsung SDI Company and China’s Amperex Technology. SDI said it would invest 150 billion won (R1.73bn) to improve product safety and expected to continue to supply batteries for Samsung phones.
Samsung said it accepted responsibility for asking battery suppliers to meet certain specifications and did not plan to take legal action against them. The company touted longer battery life and fast charging as major improvements when it launched the Note 7.
Among other measures to boost safety, Samsung said it had implemented an eightpoint battery check system to avoid any such problems going unnoticed in future. – Reuters
The company took responsibility for asking the suppliers to meet certain specifications
A Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy Note 7 smartphone at the headquarters of South Korean mobile carrier KT in Seoul, South Korea. Problems with the design and manufacturing of batteries in Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 smartphones caused them to overheat and burst into flames.