After less than 2 months on the market, where the Samsung Note was plagued by repeated reports of it catching on fire and/ or exploding, Samsung, the world’s most popular phone manufacturer, has given up and has sealed all Note 7 manufacturing sales permanently.
The Note 7 hit the market on August 19 and almost immediately there were scattered reports from around the world of the phone overheating and catching on fire (usually while charging). Despite the reports, Samsung would not admit that there was a problem; they just offered voluntary exchanges and returns and refused to do a recall, until forced to by the U.S. safety commission.
They recalled an estimated 2.5 million phones and after examining them, they started manufacturing replacements (that still ended up catching on fire over time), which finally led to Samsung releasing the official statement:
“For the benefit of consumer’s safety, we have stopped sales and exchanges of the Galaxy note 7 and have consequently decided to stop production.”
Stock Analysts have begun to tally up Samsung’s financial hit.
Analysts estimated that the potential losses to Samsung could reach 9.5 billion (10 trillion won) for the last three months of the year, which would be more than enough to wipe out the entire mobile division’s operating profits for the fourth quarter.
That being on top of the 18 billion in value loss that happened over night once the recall started to happen.
Furthermore, this does not only affect Samsung as a company, but South Korea as a whole.
According to South Korea’s trade ministry, Samsung’s smartphones account for about 2% of the country’s annual total exports.
South Korea’s finance minister Yoo Il-ho said in a weakly policy meeting in Seoul that the government closely monitored Samsung’s recall to no avail. Mr. Yoo said that the halt in sales will negatively impact the country’s export figures, according to his assistant.
Overall, this became one of the biggest and most public failures of a major electronics company in the recent history.
Wired magazine (October issue 2016. s. 25)
PC magazine (September issue 2016. s. 40)