Are Samsung’s new smartphones really exploding?

Yes, we know you want to see it before we go any further.

Here’s the best we could find, thanks to Arifgamer HD’s YouTube post:

Now let’s get back to what we know and what we don’t know about the allegedly exploding Samsung Note 7 phablet, shall we?

Reports out of South Korea this morning say that Samsung’s much-vaunted recovery in the smartphone race with Apple and others took a big hit this week as reports of exploding batteries on social media forced the firm to delay shipments of the product just weeks after its big launch. Oh, and did we mention that those same reports said that news of the delay immediately wiped out $7 billion off Samsung’s market value.

The explosion reports haven’t been confirmed, and Samsung said only that the shipments were delayed so the company could do more quality control tests. Also, it was unclear whether the delay applied to countries other than South Korea. As Reuters pointed out, the timing of the delay really sucks for Samsung:

Faults with the new premium flagship device could deal a major blow to the South Korean giant, which was counting on the Galaxy Note 7 to maintain its strong mobile earnings momentum against Apple Inc’s (AAPL.O) new iPhones expected to be unveiled next week.

“This is some major buzz-kill for Samsung, especially given all of the hard-earned excitement that products like the Note 7 have been garnering lately,” IDC analyst Bryan Ma said. “The pending Apple launch puts all the more pressure for them to contain this quickly. The timing of this couldn’t have been worse.”

Meanwhile, concerned Samsung customers took to the Internet where several people have posted images and videos of charred Galaxy Note 7s, claiming their phones had caught on fire.

“Be careful out there, everyone rocking the new Note 7, might catch fire y’all,” one user said in a YouTube clip showing a burnt Note phone. It was not immediately possible to confirm the veracity of the clip.

South Korean media outlets are quoting unnamed sources who blame the phone’s problems on a battery flaw. But for now it’s a waiting game until government regulators and Samsung can get to the bottom of things. The company could either do a software patch to fix the problem or, in a worse-case scenario, be obliged to recall the hundreds of thousands of new phones it has already sent out and, as some media are reporting, replace the batteries with the non-exploding variety.

Photo: A Samsung Galaxy Note. (AP)

 

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