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How Samsung will force you to exchange your exploding Galaxy Note 7

Published Sep 23rd, 2016 7:15AM EDT
Galaxy Note 7 Recall Safe Battery Update
Image: Zach Epstein, BGR

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Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 recall is going as planned — if you can really ever plan for such a mess. The company has brought in half a million replacement units to the US, and other markets are also receiving the safe Galaxy Note 7 versions as we speak. But Samsung won’t stop until all the damaged devices are replaced. If you’re still oblivious to the problem, Samsung won’t let you sit idly by with a fire hazard in your pocket.

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Samsung’s replacement operation is reportedly going smoothly in Canada, where many buyers have already brought in their defective units. According to Samsung Canada COO and Executive Vice President Paul Brannen, some 70% of the almost 22,000 devices sold in the region before the recall have been returned. That leaves plenty of faulty units in the wild, but Samsung wants to replace every single one of them.

“The goal is to have 100% of the affected devices replaced and these steps are the way to ensure that happens,” Brennan told Android Central. The exec referred to a few additional security steps Samsung is taking to ensure that customers can easily recognize safe Galaxy Note 7 units and that all owners of faulty phones return theirs.

Samsung and its carrier partners will push a software update to all Galaxy Note 7 units that will make it clear which devices are safe to use. A green battery indicator in the notifications shade and a green battery icon in the phone’s power menu are telling signs that you’re using a safe new Note.

The update is supposed to roll out simultaneously to all carriers and will not be optional. Users will be reminded to install it every three hours. After that, an unsafe Galaxy Note 7 that’s still in operation would show owners warnings and prompts to return the device every time the phone starts up or shuts down

Furthermore, Android and Me reports that Samsung Australia confirmed that the batteries of the faulty Galaxy Note 7 units that are still in use would be “throttled” to a maximum charge of 60%. That would limit the battery capacity to 2,100 mAh and, hopefully, reduce fire hazard.

The replacements will, however, not have the black square on the box to indicate a device is safe, as previously reported.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.