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As replacement Note7s catch fire, we're nearing a permanent suspension of our Note7 recommendation

Jon Phillips | Oct. 10, 2016
Four ostensibly safe Note7 phones have gone up in flames, begging the question, Is it time to ditch the Note7 entirely and wait for Note8?

I asked my Samsung contact if the company could expand on Koh Dong-jin’s statement, and received no further explanation. I’ve also asked: What exactly was wrong with the original battery? What exactly about the replacement battery fixes the hazard? Is it built to a different specification, or does it comes from a different source? What kind of testing and steps has Samsung taken to make sure that the new batteries are safe?

I haven’t received any answers.

Again, seeing is believing. So, Samsung, please show us your work. Without knowing exactly why Note7s continue to catch fire, it’s impossible to recommend the replacement phone, or any possible replacement of the replacement phone. As I shared with my Samsung contact a few weeks ago, we can learn a lot from Ford’s experience with exploding Pinto models in the 1978. Ford explained what was technically wrong with the Pinto’s fuel tank, and this helped restore confidence in later Ford vehicles. In other words: Exact problem found, exact problem fixed.

Until we know exactly what’s wrong with Samsung’s battery, a black storm cloud hovers above the Note7, making the phone completely untenable. So we await further details—or perhaps the Note8.


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