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Exploding Note 7s – Samsung Disclosure of the Causes

Samsung’s Disclosure of Note 7 Explosion Issues


The Galaxy Note 7, a smartphone by Samsung, received huge press and the story we all know by now. Just in case you missed it the phone was recalled Sept 2nd which was only 2 weeks after it release.  By the second week in October, the phone was discontinued following reports of the phone exploding even after replacements were sent out. The issue continued with the replacements… crazy right?

Despite the issues the phone still received good reviews as being the better phone, minus the explosion problem. So millions of phone were sold (about 3 million) and still today there are people holding onto the phone. All this after a large scale recall campaign led by Samsung, mobile carriers, and retailers.

Apparently, Samsung has disclosed the results of an intensive investigation that points to the issue as being a battery defect which led to the heat failure of their Galaxy Note 7s. In the investigation Samsung ruled out numerous causes like Fast Charging, Wireless Charging, tightness of the phone’s design, the Iris Scanner, the USB Type C port, software, and the manufacturing process. Samsung performed their own investigation and enlisted the help of the 3 firms: Exponent, UL, and TUV Rheinland. The final results being the same among all investigation and research performed.

I was curious who the battery suppliers were since Samsung only referred to them as Company A and Company B cause without that detail in my book Samsung is just saying anything. Company A was the initial company used while Company B was used during the recall in an effort to rectify the problem. Now I could get into details of the investigation but that would lose most people who probably would not know what hell was being said (or read).  I am including a gallery of images to help some sort of visualize the problem but the images themselves are still not the easiest to understand without knowledge of how batteries work.



Explaining the Note 7’s battery flaws (with cake)

Like I said earlier I needed to know who these companies are so I went digging and could only find them as being Samsung SDI (Company A) and Amperex Technology. So if this is correct then Samsung technically made the batteries while they went to Amperex after the recall again to fix the problem. After looking over the details it seems everything just went wrong in this whole ordeal or it just feels that way by Samsung. So when Samsung release the Note 7 the batteries they made had defects so they recalled the phone and used Amperex batteries in the recalled models only to still find out that these batteries also had defects. So in Samsung’s haste to fix the issue they only created a reoccurring problem but for different reasons while simply said is the same issue. Question……   Anyone ever cross the negative (Black) and positive (Red) terminals on your car battery while trying to give someone a jump? What happens?

⇐ You can also watch the video by CNET to get an idea of what is being said in this post here.

Well this is what simply happened in both company’s batteries. The design of the batteries did not ensure enough that the positive and negative tabs stayed separated and the flaws found allowed the tabs to touch in both batteries. To make it worse the second company’s batteries, by Amperex, some of the them had no insulator (separator) at all in between the tabs.

Well it seems believable giving how much trouble Samsung went through to find the cause of the Exploding Notes. From all of the stories I have read about the damages to cars, homes, and bodily injury that this has to probably be the most expensive recall made. It took time but we all know how it is when dealing with such or similar matters, or even any matter at all when more than one person or group is involved. Always full of red tape, excuses, and is time consuming. All of this in an effort to save face through the use of transparency.

Samsung also has new policies and procedures being put into place to make sure this never happens again. They talked about improved quality assurance, safety processes, multi-layered safety measures, an 8-point battery safety check, and actually forming a group to oversee all of it. A Battery Advisory Group of sorts. So with all this talk Samsung is showing seriousness in gaining consumer trust and with the Galaxy S8 coming soon, let’s hope it all can be toss to the side along with with myriad of memes out there that this EXPLODING NOTE started.

It should be all over right? Let us know what you think?

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Samsung Update: Note 7 & More…



Seems there are still a good amount (thousands) of Note 7s out there. Note 7 owners really do not want to get rid of their phones. Even after the previous attempts by companies to urge users to return their device like feature blocking software updates. Oh to be more precise updates to literally kill the phones and stop them from charging. Did they think that would stop all users? A techie person know you can avoid these updates by simply rooting the devices.  You cannot blame them especially since numerous reviews out there say the Note 7 is the best phone despite the occasional 😉  exploding issue. Let’s face it, people are just settling for the next best thing with iPhone 7s and newer LG & HTC handsets being released. How about a new Blackberry with a keyboard?

Well since no one really wants to let go of their cool Note 7s, Verizon has informed Fortune Magazine of its new plan to deal with the (possibly non) issue. Verizon is going to drop people’s accounts (I am saying this way cause it is likely some software setting) into a category that will allow only 911 calls to be made while any other calls made will be directed to customer service so they can urge you to return the phone.  Get this if you don’t return the phone Verizon may even bill you for the full retail cost of the phone. This tactic is sounding like Verizon will literally be placing good standing customers in a negative account status.  Basically if you owe money and don’t pay that bill (under normal circumstances) you will eventually not be able to make calls and your calls will get routed to customer service but still can call 911 if need be.  Are we getting the picture here?  You will probably hear or read this info in more lightly stated ways but I don’t do that here.

Samsung Running Away Far from N7


There is news out of Samsung working to distance themselves and gain public trust. To do that Samsung will be apparently making use of thermal pipes in their new phones this year. This video can give you some idea what heat pipes do.  This idea is also going to be used by LG who have already said they would be using heat pipes inside the G6. Samsung will be using heat pipes in the Galaxy S8.

I wonder why this was not used before but I can only think of the added weight this would cause in any new phones this year. So companies that make these will get business this year. There are numerous rumors about the S8 having a better heat pipe but who knows. It will probably just have the same pipes as the S7. This sounds good to me as face value but then I remember that the Note 7 did have heat pipes also and we all know how that turned out.

All and all Samsung will be announcing the results of its investigation on the Note 7 issue on Monday. I assume Samsung will also talk about what it plans to do next to avoid any further Note 7 fiascoes.



Shop for Samsung on Amazon


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Galaxy Note 7 – Let’s Talk About Batteries

All of this talk of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 around and its battery issues. So what exactly is going on then? Is the issue with the phone or is it really the battery? If it is just the battery what is the problem? Many batteries we see everyday to run into no issue yet these Note 7s have bad batteries.What is a battery? A battery is a type of voltage source that is composed of one or more cells that converts chemical energy directly into electrical energy. All batteries use a specific type of chemical reaction called an oxidation-reduction reaction. In this type of reaction, electrons are transferred from one reactant to the other. If the chemicals used in the reaction are separated, it is possible to cause the electrons to travel in the external circuit, creating current. As long as there is an external path for the electrons, the reaction can proceed, and stored chemical energy is converted to electrical current. The image below shows the basic copper-zinc battery. Batteries all follow this basic idea.

cooper-zinc battery

 

I am sure this will lose some of you and so here is a video to help you out a bit.

How Batteries Work

So the idea here is using chemicals to produce electricity and as for the Note 7, why is this phone such a fire hazard? The problem is the lithium-ion battery which is a common source of power that is used in cellphones, computers, power tools and toys.

Lithium

periodic-table-lithiumLithium which is the 3rd element on the periodic table is a silver-white metal that can catch fire when exposed to oxygen or water. So how can lithium be used then for batteries? Sounds more dangerous than useful right? Well Sony Corp. apparently made a way to safely use lithium by keeping the lithium ions in a suspension or chemical so that it is not pure lithium.
Properly made batteries have safety measures built into them but faulty batteries with poorly made electric circuitry can end up with fiery results. Bad batteries can be overcharged but good ones will stop charging automatically once they are full. If bad batteries are left plugged in for too long the lithium ions can collect in one spot and be deposited as metallic lithium within the battery. Now remember what happens to lithium when exposed. Heat from the overcharging can cause oxygen bubbles within the gel. You get the picture??? The opposite per say can also be a problem with a bad battery where they can be over-discharged which means they won’t shut off when the power is too low which can also cause a fire.

And there you have it. Be careful when using off name brand batteries or if you happen to still have your Note 7. Also if  the battery is not listed as being rechargeable do not try to recharge it. Non-rechargeable, or Primary Batteries, are not designed to  be recharged and can cause damage and possibly fires.

25 December 2015

Apparently now you have to be careful how you name your device’s wifi hotspot or even your Bluetooth name. Seem an airline has literally stopped a flight due to finding a network named “Samsung Galaxy Note 7_1097” Seriously this flight was canceled due to this. Passengers had to readjust their itineraries.

No Note 7 was found on this plane but no one came forward at first while they went looking for the person who owned this ph0ne with the pilot threating to search everyone’s bag. The person finally owned up to it when the threat to divert the plane from its destination to Wyoming. Mond you this flight was from San Francisco to Boston. I guess this person did not wanna goto Wyoming. 

There’s no mention if this person was punished go hey who wants to try to name their phone Galaxy Note 7? You know what if you are one onf the more tech savvy one of us and you flash a Note 7 ported ROM?….. 

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Samsung Note 7 – Exploding Notes?

On September 2nd Samsung acknowledged issues with the battery inside the Note 7 handsets. There were several reports of faulty batteries going around where the phone (or the battery) exploded. Samsung said it had found a problem with the battery in some of the phones and was halting sales in 10 countries, including South Korea and the U.S.  Samsung said phones in China don’t appear to be affected because it used another battery supplier but was unclear if models sold in China would be recalled. All sales outlet for the Note 7 have followed suit and halted sales, pulled the device form their sites, and offer exchanges. I hear Sprint is offering up similar devices for customers to use during the recall process. To give you a better picture of the situation here is a video to checkout.

Imagine this happening to you while the phone is in your pocket?

A Galaxy Note 7 owner in South Korea, who asked that he not be identified, told CNN Money he was awoken in the middle of the night when he “smelled something burning.” His phone had melted and he used his older model Samsung, Galaxy Note 2, to take photos that he posted online. (source: CNN)  A south Korean news agency Yonhap had reported five claims around the world of Note 7s catching fire while charging while unverified photos posted on social media showed charred devices.

There have been 35  reported cases of this happening and Samsung has jumped in quickly and announced a full recall of the the Note 7 phablet. Samsung has stated that they will replace all of the phones that were already purchased and they have already setup an exchange program. The exchange program goes as follows.
United States customers have 2 options

  • Exchange a Note 7 for a new, fixed Note 7
  • Exchange a Note 7 for a Galaxy S7 Edge and replacement of any Note 7 specific accessories with a refund on the price difference between devices.

Samsung mentioned that the Note 7 for Note 7 exchange could start next week but nothing so far as to when the Note 7 for S7 Edge will start. ALSO, Samsung is giving Note 7 buyer a $25 gift card or credit off of their phone bill for  their troubles. Of course this only applies if you are swapping out phones with another Samsung Note or S line of phones.

The program will be implemented in conjunction with your carrier so visit your carrier to get the ball rolling.

The Note 7 Recall is definitely a huge blow to Samsung. All you Apple fans can start talking your junk now to no real avail since Samsung is obviously not going anywhere.  Samsung’s response to the problem is not what Apple has done in the past which chalking issues up to software related problems. If you think that is an error feel free to comment. (Just throwing that out there…lol) Samsung stock as dipped to a 2-week low (reuters) while the Apple iPhone 7 is expected to be announced next week in San Francisco. So Samsung needs to get moving or they stand to lose money by the iPhone 7 eating into the market. The cellphone business being one that still locks people in for a period of time.

 

So if you waited to buy the Note 7 or were warming up to it… You will have to wait. Although I have been hearing that September 30th may be a day you may be able to buy your new, cool, fixed Note 7. As the issue just seems to be a battery issue. Changing batteries and/or battery carrier would fix things just nicely. I can imagine the process being accepting all the bad phones and just changing the battery. Although I will say people have been finding issues with the phone. Mentioning that the phone lags and very fast battery drainage. This mainly though came from T-mobile customers. I have not seen all of the complaints has of yet but these were the ones that stood out.  Oh carriers are waiving their restocking fee…  ooooh. (sarcasm) I cannot  forget also customers still get to keep their free year of Netlflix.

UPDATE:

I have heard from a source close to Samsung that the phones will be available for exchange starting next week. Samsung will not be doing it directly so this process will happen at the carrier level.

Sept 6, 2016

Note 7 related hotel fire…

Another Note 7 has been reported as exploding. The owner was an Australian man in a hotel no doubt. The explosion caused about $1400 in damages in the hotel room. The man was apparently on a business trip when his room almost went up in flames.

“My brand new Note7 exploded this morning while I was still asleep, it was plugged in and charging,” he said. “Phone completely fried, I can’t eject the SIM tray to retrieved [sic] my SIM or the SD card. I was using original charger and cable if you are wondering. Charred the hotel room bed sheet and the carpet when I whacked it down to the floor, burnt one of my finger [sic] while doing that too. “[Samsung] told me this is the first case in Australia,” he added. “I have gone to Samsung store and they gave me a loan device, and have been promised that they will take care of the hotel damages bill.” (Numerous sources. Just google it.)

Though still insure of this story which originated on Reddit where the man posted the story.

Possible House Fire Caused by Note 7

FAA Plans to Ban the Note 7

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is considering a ban on the Note 7. So passenger will not be able to take their Note 7 device on planes. Now the FAA is still thinking about it. The Transportation Security Administration and US Airlines are talking about it also. If these all decide to label the Note 7 as a hazardous product, passengers will be, I repeat, prohibited from carrying a Note 7 on board of upcoming flights. The actual details are still confusing which means they have no clue yet what they wanna do. Since Samsung has not made an official recall of the phone they feel the need to take some action. If you are yet still confused. Yes Samsung has recalled the Note 7 but they have not taken the official steps which is getting the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission involved. It just sounds like a lot of time wasted going through red tape and paperwork to me. So Samsung has initiated their own recall. But the official way to do it apparently makes sure no one else can still sell the possibly defective Note 7s still out there.


Sept 12, 2016

6 Year Old Boy from Brooklyn Burned by a Note 7

 

Sept 15, 2016

Signs of ‘Safe’ Note 7s

New Galaxy Note 7 phones will have boxes with a giant S mark on them to show you have the “safe” phone. Which is an indication to help ease the public’s concerns about having to get another phone with a defective battery. We all know how the insurance replacements go. You pay money for your replacement normally to quite often get a refurbish unit. Anyone that is not new to the cellphone game knows this. To add there may be another indication of ‘hitting the safe spot’ is the battery indicator which supposedly will have a green fill instead of the default white. This detail though I would not trust 100% cause this can be easily changed or mimicked so if you buy your Note 7 online be careful. (–source zdnet.com & pocketnow.com)

 

President of Samsung US Apologizes

Sept 19th is the day to start looking for safe Note 7s while the 21st is the latest.

PhoneArena.com setup a poll…

phonearenapoll_8-sept-2016

DECEMBER 10, 2016


UPDATE:

The Note 7 had several reoccurring fire incidence so Samsung went through official channels & started the recall. Now Samsung you could tell was trying to avoid this to preserve the Note 7’s ability to sell but they had no choice due to the reoccurring events. Samsung has made several attempts at getting these phones out of people’s hands, the replacement program being its main effort. Note 7s in the US are restricted from charging past 60 percent and receive a pop-up notification about the recall every time the screen is turned on. In Canada, Note 7s are about to have all wireless networking disabled so they won’t even be able to make a phone call.

Months later and a large part of the public still wants a Note 7. There are numerous reviews of the Note 7 that despite the battery fire issues deem the Note 7 the better phone among current options available. This being the case, other phones have been released by other manufacturers while consumers look for some equivalent option. Some make claim the LG V20 being equal without pen features. A true Note user knows better as the S-Pen just adds so much more to the device.

Note 7 owners basically just did not want to give up their phones. Samsung says that 93 percent of US-sold Note 7 units have now been returned, which means there are about 133,000 phones still out there. 

So what now?

Samsung will now render the remaining Galaxy Note 7s in the US useless and inoperable with an update for the recalled smartphone. Anyone getting any Apple thoughts in the brain? (This though is intentional where Apple just messed up.)  On Dec 9th Samsung confirmed that it plans to release an update on December 19th that will be distributed across all major carriers within 30 days. So what’s happening is this update will disable charging of the phones all together which will eventually render all updated phones useless.

Now this sounds good an all but I can literally think of a way around this which I will not mention here in this blog but anyone that is familiar with jailbreaking & rooting will already know what I mean.

If you must break down & give up the ghost. Note 7 owners still rocking the cool phone can still return your phones or exchange them for other Samsung devices.

If there is anymore updates I will keep you posted… Keep checking.