Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. may be planning to brick its Note7 smartphones that have not been returned following the recall of the device earlier this month.
The source of the potential decision is unclear, with some sites attributing it to a subsequently deleted thread on Reddit that claimed at the very least, Samsung was planning to remotely make unreturned phones non-functional in France.
While the source may be nothing more than an Internet rumor, the move by Samsung would make complete sense given that stories of Note7’s catching fire continue to increase, including an incident Saturday night that put a Brooklyn child in hospital.
According to The New York Post the 6-year-old child was using his Note7 when it suddenly burst into flames.
“The child was watching videos on the phone when the battery exploded,” the child’s grandmother explained. “It set off alarms in my house.”
Other incidents of Note7’s catching fire include a case where the phone was said to have exploded and burned down a Chrysler Jeep utility in Saint Petersburg, Florida and one in Perth, Australia where a burning Note7 caused over one thousand dollars worth of damage.
“Please do not use the phone anymore, it is dangerous and not worth the risk,” Reddit user Chrusader explained.”I knew of the recall and lodged my application with Samsung as soon as they announced officially on Friday, and now 3 days later it has happened to me.”
Stop using now
While Samsung believes that the fault only affects 0.1 percent of phones, of 2.5 million Note7 models sold prior to the recall, that’s potentially 25,000 phones that could catch fire and not only cause damage to property but also people as well.
If you’re using a Note7 stop now as even if the risk is small the risk is real none the less.
Users have the option to exchange their Note7 for a fixed version when it becomes available or alternatively the Note7 can be exchanged for a Galaxy S7 Edge, with a refund in price difference and replacement of any Note7 accessories; while the Galaxy S7 Edge doesn’t have a stylus it is only 0.2 inches small in size and provides nearly all the same features, except for catching fire.
To return a device, contact Samsung or the store you purchased the phone from initially.
Image credit: Imgur/Reddit user Chrushader.