Skip to main content

U.S. regulators investigate replacement Note 7 that caught fire aboard a plane

Samsung Galaxy Note 7
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends
The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 situation is getting more and more serious. Between fires getting started and children getting burned, Samsung’s newest smartphone has caused some serious havoc. The latest chapter in the saga? A smoking Galaxy Note 7 forced a Southwest flight to evacuate.

The real kicker to this story is that the Galaxy Note 7 in question wasn’t an old model — it was one of the replacement models. What that means is that even replacement Galaxy Note 7 phones could be at risk of exploding. Obviously, that’s not good for Samsung. What’s even worse for Samsung is that the U.S. government is now investigating the situation.

Thankfully, no one was injured in this particular incident. The plane actually wasn’t even in the air yet — it was still boarding. But it suggests that Samsung’s nightmare might not be over just yet. That’s especially true considering the fact that the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says that it’s “moving expeditiously” to figure out what happened. If it finds something wrong with the replacement device, Samsung could be looking at another recall. Samsung, however, is skeptical.

“We are working with the authorities and Southwest now to recover the device and confirm the cause,” said Samsung in a statement.

Still, a report from The Verge confirms that it was indeed a replacement device. Brian Green, who owned the phone, said he had his original phone replaced at an AT&T store on September 21. The Verge also got a picture of the phone’s box, showing a black square symbol that confirms it’s a replacement device. Green also says that device had a green battery icon, indicating that it’s safe to use.

A second recall would be an absolute disaster for Samsung. The company has already spent millions upon millions of dollars in recalling the Galaxy Note 7 the first time around, and a second recall wouldn’t just cost millions more, but would put a more serious dent in customer trust in the company.

Samsung officially recalled Galaxy Note 7 phones sold before September 15 a few weeks ago, after it was revealed that the devices were at serious risk of catching fire due to a battery flaw. The recall was issued after Samsung received 92 reports of Galaxy Note 7 batteries overheating — 26 of those cases resulted in burns and 55 in property damage of some kind. In some cases, there were fires in cars and in garages. In this instance, the device caused minor damage to the plane’s carpet.

Updated on 10-06-2016 by Christian de Looper: Added information about government investigation.

Editors' Recommendations

Christian de Looper
Christian’s interest in technology began as a child in Australia, when he stumbled upon a computer at a garage sale that he…
Should the Galaxy S22 Ultra replace your Note 20 Ultra?
Galaxy S22 Ultra and Note 20 Ultra screens held in hand.

If the S Pen is like an extension of your body, then you’ve probably stuck with the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra since it was released, unwilling to compromise by getting an S21 Ultra and the S Pen case accessory. But now Samsung has the Galaxy S22 Ultra, and it comes with an S Pen stylus inside the body. Does that mean it’s time to upgrade, and if so, what else should you expect?

I’ve given the two a back-to-back workout to see if now is the time for Note 20 Ultra owners to get a new phone.
Hold the phones
There is almost no difference whatsoever between the Galaxy S22 Ultra and the Note 20 Ultra when you hold them both. It’s uncanny how similar the two are, with the same flat end caps, the same sharply curved sides, and essentially identical dimensions. Even the placement of the speaker grille on the bottom of both phones is exactly the same. However, Samsung decided the 208 gram Note 20 Ultra wasn’t heavy enough and added another 20 grams to the overall weight of the S22 Ultra.

Read more
How Samsung reimagined the Galaxy Note to make the S22 Ultra
Galaxy S22 Ultra in Phantom White.

Is the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra really a new Ultra phone, or is it a new Galaxy Note just without the name? It turns out it’s both ... and neither. It’s something new, where the essence of both these great device families has been rolled into one, and a lot of what we're seeing comes from Samsung’s commitment to listening to its customers.

Digital Trends spoke to Nick Porter, vice president of product management and commercial operations at Samsung U.K. and Ireland, ahead of the new Galaxy S22 smartphone range’s launch about what makes the Galaxy S22 Ultra new, yet still surprisingly familiar.

Read more
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra render leak suggests a Galaxy Note replacement
Galaxy S22 ultra render revealing the front and back of the smartphone.

As we head towards 2022, a slew of smartphone launches awaits us. Ahead of the official unveiling, a number of leaks surrounding the next-gen OnePlus smartphones have already popped online. Now, it's Samsung's turn with the leak of a Galaxy S22 Ultra render. The takeaway from that one image is -- it might be the next Galaxy Note replacement.

Popular tipster Evan Blass aka @EvLeaks uploaded a render of the upcoming Galaxy S22 Ultra on Twitter. The alleged render reveals the front and back sides of the device. According to the image, the upcoming Ultra smartphone will come equipped with curved edges -- both front and back. It could result in a much more ergonomic fit in the hands. However, the flat corners might spoil the in-hand comfort that you'd get from a phone with curved corners.

Read more