It seemed unlikely we would make it through the end of the day without some more big news out of Samsung. And now, just after the close of business hours here on the East Coast, we’ve got something straight from the company itself.
After a string of statements regarding investigations around the safety of replacement Galaxy Note 7 devices, the company is officially calling on carrier and retail partners to stop selling the handset while the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission looks into the growing number of incidents.
“Because consumers’ safety remains our top priority,” the statement explains, “Samsung will ask all carrier and retail partners globally to stop sales and exchanges of the Galaxy Note 7 while the investigation is taking place.”
Rather than issuing yet another replacement plan as it did early last month (didn’t go so great the first time, after all), the company is offering up a full refund for consumers or a refund for a different device, along with a $25 gift certificate or other add-on for the pain of dealing with two rounds of recalls. Along with its note to carriers and retailers, the company is asking Note owners to turn their devices off and take them back to where they bought them.
According to the official Safety Recall statement,
Galaxy Note7 Owners need to do one of the following:
- Exchange your current Galaxy Note7 for a Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 edge and replacement of any Galaxy Note7 specific accessories with a refund of the price difference between devices; or
- Contact your point of purchase to obtain a full refund.
Customers who exchange a Note7 device will also receive a $25 gift card, in-store credit, in-store accessory credit or bill credit from select carrier retail outlets.
This marks a major turning point — but perhaps not the end of the saga. The CPSC’s investigation remains ongoing, and Samsung says that it “remain[s] committed to working diligently” with the organization. The company still hasn’t fully thrown in the towel on the device, even as a growing list of voices in the media have insisted that it go ahead and cut its losses on the faulty phablet.
A lot has unfolded over the last several days. On Thursday, the first reported case of a problematic replacement unit surfaced, causing an entire Southwest plane to evacuate while waiting at the gate. Since then, a number of other reports have hit the media, leading top carriers, including AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon and, most recently, US Cellular to officially stop selling the phone until given the go-ahead by the CPSC.
Earlier today, Samsung responded to reports that it was suspending Note production, stating that was, “temporarily adjusting the Galaxy Note7 production schedule in order to take further steps to ensure quality and safety matters.” The same statement contained acknowledgement of carrier actions, stating, “We recognize that carrier partners have stopped sales and exchanges of the Galaxy Note7 in response to reports of heat damage issues, and we respect their decision.”
As with its announcement in early September, this news doesn’t appear to be an official recall so much as a strongly worded suggestion. The company will likely wait for official word from the CPSC on that front. In the meantime, it’s suggested that users of both the original and replacement Notes surrender their devices.
Meantime, more info can be found on Samsung’s site.